Penza, 21 April 2016. PenzaNews. Lyudmila Kolomytseva, renown Penza civil activist, All-Russian People’s Front expert, follower of “A Just Russia” party’s course and assistant editor-in-chief of “Novaya Sotsialnaya Gazeta” newspaper, very nearly accused the regional authorities of shutting down her show “Checked. Communal Services Front” that first appeared on air of the regional TV channel “Express” on April 6.
“We didn’t have this kind of travesty of justice even under the rule of Vasily Bochkarev [Penza region governor from 1998 to May 2015] who came to be known as a strict and ruthless dictator. But nobody from his retinue was shutting down any TV shows or newspapers. It appears a new age is coming into fruition in Penza – the age of fear and silence. Who would be behind all this? It seems to me that administrative influence most likely has its hand here, as our project has a political party component. ‘A Just Russia,’ of which I am a member and a supporter, is actively participating in many media projects in the region – the Communal Services Front newspaper, the ‘Justice Raid’ project together with the Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper, and my ‘Express’ TV project,” says the statement by Lyudmila Kolomytseva received by PenzaNews on Thursday, April 21.
She also appealed to her “peers in industry and writing” to visit her press conference that will be taking place at 16.00 of April 21 in Penza on Pushkina street, 43 (by “Evropeisky” restaurant).
Lyudmila Kolomytseva’s harsh critique came after the second run of the show “Checked. Communal Services Front” was not aired by the TV channel “Express” on Wednesday, April 20.
At the same time, the statement published on the website of the regional “A Just Russia” party branch contains more direct and harsh accusations against the Penza region authorities.
“We learned from unofficial sources that the first run of the TV show, aired on 6 April 2016, caused panic among the officials. It is likely that they did not expect to see such honest and precise critique involving a large number of citizens and opinions by communal experts. The situation with communal issues in Penza is long and far past its boiling point. The new TV project caused it to simply explode. And the powers that be did not like that,” the statement says.
Moreover, according to it, the official letter the party received from the TV channel “Express” says that “the parties failed to agree on crucial service provision conditions, which prevents [the channel] from following up on their obligations” and air a complete and already announced new run of the TV show.
“That’s the reality: the program is published by the opposition party ‘A Just Russia’ that became an eye sore for all dark forces in the region. Today, we should have begun editing the third run of the show that we filmed in Nizhny Lomov, and the filming crew was getting ready for a trip to Kamenka on Friday. But instead, the Penza citizens will not be seeing the problems of their compatriots. The authorities oppose the truth and resent critique,” stresses the press release that concludes with the 20-minute-long show uploaded on YouTube.
The video in question already surpassed a level of 100 views.