SUNBIZ

Fijian Television Executive In Papua New Guinea Row

A television executive from Fiji is in the middle of a dispute consuming the Papua New Guinea news media. Sheena Hughes, acting chief executive officer of main Papua New Guinea
23 Aug 2019 13:03
Fijian Television Executive In Papua New Guinea Row
L-R: Sheena Hughes, acting chief executive officer of main Papua New Guinea station EMTV and EMTV news and current affairs head Neville Choi

A television executive from Fiji is in the middle of a dispute consuming the Papua New Guinea news media.

Sheena Hughes, acting chief executive officer of main Papua New Guinea station EMTV, this week signed a letter terminating news and current affairs head Neville Choi.

This sparked uproar. There were claims by journalists of political interference in the news and social media criticism of Fijian influence in Papua New Guinea’s media.

What happened?

Mr Choi was accused by Ms Hughes of insubordination.

He allegedly refused to fire a senior journalist reporting on controversial government cars, refused to stop a story on soldiers protesting outside the Prime Minister’s office overpay and took unauthorised leave to attend a meeting as Media Council chairperson.

Journalists claimed political interference against a respected editor at a TV station owned by a Papua New Guinea Government controlled telecom company.

Mr Choi was returned to work yesterday after EMTV journalists protested over his removal and refused to produce the news.

The row same time brought to the surface social media criticism of the number of Fijians in key roles in Papua New Guinea radio and TV stations and newspapers.

About Ms Hughes

Suva Grammar School old girl Ms Hughes started her career in Fiji with SPR Videopac in 1993 as a video editor and graphic artist.

  • She spent 16 years with Pasifika Communications as a commercial and documentary producer/director.
  • Ms Hughes moved to Papua New Guinea in 2012 where she took over and transformed EMTV’s production department, Emtek, into a market leader.
  • She has been acting CEO of Media Niugini (EMTV and Emtek Media) since June last year.
  • Media Niugini was a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fiji Television when she joined.
  • But in January 2016 it was bought by Papua New Guinea state-owned telecom company Telikom PNG and operates as a subsidiary.
  • Ms Hughes is an MBA graduate of Torrens University in Australia and Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union council member.
  • She has declined to comment to Papua New Guinea journalists about Mr Choi’s dismissal and reinstatement.

Feedbackmaraia.vula@fijisun.com.fj

Fiji Sun Instagram
Fiji Plus
Subscribe-to-Newspaper