IBA employees demonstrate outside Erdan’s Savyon home

Protesters hold Erdan responsible for freeze on funding that would enable the implementation of IBA reforms.

August 18, 2013 01:51
1 minute read.
Home Front Defense Minister Gilad Erdan

Gilad Erdan 370. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)

After demonstrating last week outside the Finance Ministry for its failure to honor its commitment to the Israel Broadcasting Authority reforms, some 100 placard-waving and shofar-blowing IBA employees took their protest to the home of Communications Minister Gilad Erdan in Savyon on Friday.

The protesters held Erdan responsible for the freeze on funding that would enable the implementation of the reforms. Erdan, very soon after receiving the Communications portfolio, declared that the IBA was mismanaged and too cumbersome and that the only way to remedy the situation was to close it and reopen it under a new format.

The reforms would have included reducing the IBA payroll by some 700 jobs. If the IBA is closed, more than 2,000 people who work directly or indirectly for it will lose their jobs.

Critics say that if the public broadcasting service is closed, there will be little likelihood of it being revitalized in any format, especially during a period of economic crisis and under a finance minister with a policy of budgetary cutbacks and increased taxes.

Erdan, in response to the demonstration, wrote on his Facebook page that the government cannot continue to spend a billion shekels a year on public broadcasting.

Representatives of the Jerusalem Journalists Association said the figure quoted by Erdan was a gross exaggeration and that he was disseminating erroneous information.

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