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ABC must think again on weekend radio cutbacks.

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Parliament House, Canberra ACT 2600

ABC Must Think Again on Weekend Radio Cutbacks

A101/2003 4th September 2003

The ABC needs to explain why rural and regional radio services have been targeted for service cutbacks, the Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of the National Party, John Anderson, said today.

The ABC has decided to replace local and state radio bulletins on weekend afternoons with nationally produced reports. These bulletins, put together by hard-working and committed ABC staff, are relied upon heavily by listeners in country areas.

“I cannot see why the ABC has taken this step and it appears to have been made without a lot of thought,” Mr Anderson said.

“The ABC’s funding has been maintained at real levels so it can provide these sort of services, which most people regard as a critical function of the ABC charter.

“I call on ABC management to rethink this decision.”

Media contact: Paul Chamberlin 02 62777680

Ph: 02 6277 7680 Email: Fax: 02 6273 4126