BSA Decisions Ngā Whakatau a te Mana Whanonga Kaipāho

All BSA's decisions on complaints 1990-present

Rupa and Māori Television - 2010-009

  • Peter Radich (Chair)
  • Leigh Pearson
  • Mary Anne Shanahan
  • Tapu Misa
  • Dilip Rupa
Native Affairs
Māori Television
Māori Television

Complaint under section 8(1B)(b)(i) of the Broadcasting Act 1989
Complaint that Māori Television did not refer to the anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence – allegedly in breach of controversial issues standard

Matter of editorial discretion – decline to determine under section 11(b) of the Broadcasting Act

This headnote does not form part of the decision.


[1]   Dilip Rupa complained that the current affairs programme Native Affairs, broadcast by Māori Television on 28 October 2009, did not mention that it was the anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence of New Zealand. He said that this was not balanced reporting.

Broadcaster's Response to the Complainant

[2]   Māori Television confirmed that it had not broadcast any items referring to the Declaration of Independence on that date.

Referral to the Authority

[3]   Dilip Rupa forwarded his complaint to the Authority for review.

Authority's Determination

[4]   The members of the Authority have read the correspondence listed in the Appendix. We determine the complaint without a formal hearing.

[5]   Section 11(b) of the Broadcasting Act 1989 states that the Authority may decline to determine a complaint if it considers “that, in all the circumstances of the complaint, it should not be determined by the Authority”.

[6]   Dilip Rupa’s complaint is that Māori Television chose not to cover a particular story during an episode of Native Affairs. This is a matter of editorial discretion which we do not have any jurisdiction to consider.

[7]   Accordingly, we decline to determine the complaint under section 11(b) of the Broadcasting Act 1989.

For the above reasons the Authority declines to determine the complaint.

Signed for and on behalf of the Authority


Peter Radich
27 April 2010


The following correspondence was received and considered by the Authority when it determined this complaint:

1.            Dilip Rupa’s email to Māori Television – 24 November 2009
2.           Māori Television’s response – 1 December 2009
3.           Dilip Rupa’s referral to the Authority – 29 December 2009