Adam Bennett

Adam is a political reporter for the New Zealand Herald.

Premature airing of political ads lands radio network in hot water

United Future leader Peter Dunne. File photo / NZPA
United Future leader Peter Dunne. File photo / NZPA

The premature airing of campaign advertisements for Peter Dunne's United Future Party have seen The Radio Network become the latest broadcaster to be referred to police for alleged breaches of the Broadcasting Act.

The Electoral Commission today said it had referred the broadcaster to the police for broadcasting election programmes for United Future on 25 October 2011.

"It is the Electoral Commission's view that the broadcasts for United Future on 25 October constituted a breach of section 70 of the Broadcasting Act 1989 because broadcasters were prohibited from broadcasting election programmes for a political party outside of the election period for the 2011 General Election, which began on 26 October and ended on 25 November 2011'', the Commission said on its website.

A spokesman for Mr Dunne said the matter related to United Future campaign advertisements featuring the voice of Mr Dunne which were played a day too early in error by The Radio Network.

"We weren't even aware of it at the time'', the spokesman said.

Earlier this month the commission referred TVNZ to the police for an election night news broadcast, and also referred RadioLive over its broadcast of the "Prime Minister's Hour'' on September 30 last year.

- NZ Herald

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