Berlusconi criticises Rai

Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi has once again hit out at commercial broadcaster Rai for having an anti-government agenda, claiming that the majority of Italians agree with him.

He claimed Rai is always “against the government”, according to local reports, adding that Channel 3 was particularly critical. Berlusconi, who owns Italy’s biggest private broadcaster Mediaset, said Rai should not attack the government or the opposition but should instead stick to its public service remit, which is to inform, instruct and entertain its audience. Opposition leader Dario Franceschini accused Berlusconi of wanting to suppress the media.

Separately, deputy minister for economic development Paolo Romani has rejected allegations that Rai’s decision to focus on the digital-terrestrial and TivùSat free-to-air satellite platforms was politically motivated and designed to favour the interests of Berlusconi’s Mediaset group.

In a letter to the Corriere della Sera newspaper, Romani said the development of digital-terrestrial made strategic sense. He said that Rai was required to be available on all platforms but not necessarily as part of all offers on different platforms. 

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