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So, BBS has not been permitted to broadcast live coverage of most of the proceedings of the fourth session of the National Assembly. Only the opening and closing ceremonies, and the discussions on the Anticorruption Commission’s annual report will be broadcast live. This is how it was in the National Assembly’s third session. And, like then, I am still concerned that the independence and freedom of the nation’s only TV station is being compromised.

But what I recently read in the Kuensel got me even more concerned. BBS’s general manager was quoted as saying: “MoIC wants us to submit a proposal for NA coverage and we did it.” The article goes on to state that the BBS “…are yet to hear from the ministry.”

BBS should be regulated by BICMA, not MOIC. And, BBS should be managed by its Board of Directors, not by MOIC.


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  1. Before we all were of the view that even though the Opposition is small (and therefore weak), we still have the media in the NA so we can judge the proceedings. But now the DPT like a authoritrain regime has cut of media and they seem to prefer behind the door discussion in an anti-democratic way. This is a dangerous precedant for democracy in Bhutan. Transparency is a trade mark of democracy while secreacy is the mark of dictatorship.

  2. Don’t we Bhutanese have to right to see what is happening in our national assembly session. why DPT government isn’t explaining why they are not allowing live broadcast.Its such a shame. No wonder DPT wants key decisions to go in their own way.

  3. From my Blog:

    It insults my common sense and intelligence when one of our MPs say that live TV coverage doesn’t allow NA members to concentrate or contribute to the discussion of bills. Such absurdity must be false and it is worse than giving no reasons at all. This reminds me of a Lincoln’s quote – “”Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.”

    But if it is true – it seriously brings into question the capabilities of our MPs, and with or without TV, their contributions may not matter. I have always thought our MPs to be fairly well-informed and intelligent.

    With very little common sense, one can see the benefits of live coverage –

    * The people would be able to follow and understand the discussions on some of the bills.
    * This is an opportunity to see their elected representatives contribute to the nation through debates and discussions – an integral process in any democracy
    * Finally – also an opportunity for the MPs to demonstrate to their constituents that their trust and confidence aren’t misplaced.

    Whatever, such episodes embarrass me and also diminish the respect that I have for our elected representatives.

  4. i am just curious, why they don’t want to allow live telecast!!!…Is it really something to do with cost? is it really costly to make live telecast? If it is really very costly, then i will agree with it as most of us will be in the field and offices. Otherwise, i request honorable MPs to allow live telecast!

  5. This is absurd.
    Where is the Freedom of Information?
    I am not very comfortable with the meeting behind closed doors.
    And the reason they gave is simply not reason enough. Can’t concentrate? Get the hell out! This is simply not acceptable.

  6. DPT MP’s are concerned that the country and the people might see their hushed character, yawning and making poker face. Poor BBS, puppet hanging controlled by many masters, speak when they ask, eat when they want and walk when they rest. DTP government with iron fist is making mockery of BICMA and the tom, dick and harries, board members just enjoying the doma and shaking their head.

  7. I could listen to the NA online in 2008 ( that must have been the second NA after the election) even here in the US and I was very impressed by the progress we had made since the advent of internet.But most importantly, I was interested to know and particpate in the dicussions while it went on rather than hearing it after it got mended or censored. there’s is a lot of power in the communication via body languages/ voice tone and I didn’t want to miss it.

    The expenses is just an excuse. When the Govt. can find money to pay huge sum of moeny to consultants who tell us what we already know, I think the Govt. ought to consdier making funds available to broadcast the proceeds of the NA. So what, if people watched it and didn’t do thier work at home for a few hours during the day.Its’ thier choice. But there’s is a positive externality- “awareness” by the general public. Poeple who have time watch and people who don’t don’t. i don’t think it is up to the Govt. to regulate what people do during the day. ANd i know this came up a lot during the last discussions- So what if the members of the parliament wore expensive ghos and kiras – it is thier money and resources – isn’t it?
    and If that is really the issue- did banning the TV broadcast have an impact on the member,s way of dressing? In any case… I think people care more about the issues that is in discussion and not in the clothes the member’s are wearing.
    The Govt. is very lame in not allowing the media…. this is unacceptable and the govt. should do something about it. Reallocate funds if that’s the issue. regulate dress codes if expensive ghos and kiras are one … but allow us to watch and know the truth….

  8. Plz watch this


    This clip reminds me of our MP Tshering Penjor.

  10. Please know the difference between government and assembly before pointing fingers. The decision on the BBS live telecast was made by the speaker and the assembly members not by the government. If you can’t differentiate the two, you may as well ask OL to clarify.

  11. thanks Toula, I believe your comment was menat for my comment . I am of the idea that the the national assemly members and the Govt is apparently the same body. Aren’;t they the same people?

  12. PS: I think the PM ought to be in Bhutan and not in Brazil during the NA. Was the keynote more important the National Assembly? May be – or may be not?

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