Vote coming soon on RTVS director

Three candidates are especially favoured

RTVS head Václav Mika presents his project for the broadcaster.RTVS head Václav Mika presents his project for the broadcaster. (Source: Sme)

Eight candidates will run for the top position at the public-service broadcaster RTVS in an election scheduled for June 15. The candidates spoke before the parliamentary culture and media committee on their ideas for the broadcaster’s future. Three candidates are especially favoured, the Sme daily reported.

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One is incumbent RTVS head Václav Mika, who said that it makes sense for him to continue in his position.

“I’ve prepared the project as a vision, and it’s a project that has continuity,” Mika said, as quoted by the TASR newswire. “I view the world of public service media as one of values, not business.”

His plans include increasing the number of full-format TV channels from two to four and adding a fifth online channel in 2022. He said that he plans to operate 15 broadcasting stations by 2022 – eight of which would be in the FM band, with the rest broadcast online or digitally.

Mika’s chances of winning, however, might be affected by Prime Minister Robert Fico’s call on Smer MPs to vote for a change to RTVS, Sme wrote. Both Smer and its coalition partner, the Slovak National Party (SNS), have repeatedly criticised the broadcaster.

The candidate who seems to be most accepted by the coalition is Michal Ruttkay, who is well-known within the advertising sector. Ruttkay proposed creating a third TV channel focused on sports and a fourth one for YouTubers and the younger generation, Sme wrote.

According to media reports, the current head of TASR, Jaroslav Rezník, is also a favourite in the vote, though Sme reports that he is not favoured by one of the coalition parties, Most-Híd.

If no candidate garners more than half of the votes on June 15, then the two candidates with the highest tallies will advance to a second round scheduled for June 22.

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