WARSAW – No presidential TV debate

Opposition presidential candidate Rafał Trzaskowski announced he will not take part in a televised election debate with his rival, incumbent Andrzej Duda (PiS), that is due to take place on state broadcaster TVP on Monday (6 July).

Trzaskowski had claimed the debate would be a “set up” in favour of the president, whose campaign has been supported by TVP, which is said to be influence by the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party.

Earlier in the week, Duda refused to take part in a debate organised by a private television station, TVN, for similar reasons, accusing Trzaskowski of “wanting to organise a debate under the protection of foreign media”, referring to the American and Swiss-German ownership of the outlet.

Trzaskowski had proposed an alternative form of debate tomorrow evening, involving a range of media outlets.

Instead of the TVP debate, he proposed an alternative head-to-head, to be broadcast at the same time as the original programme, called “Presidential Arena” which would involve “journalists from the right to the left” of the media spectrum, including pro-government outlets such as TVP and wPolityce, as well as those favourable to the opposition, such as TVN and Gazeta Wyborcza.

If Duda rejects the proposal, there might be no direct debate between the two candidates before next Sunday’s second round run-off election.

(Alexandra Brzozowski, EURACTIV.com)

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