The Malta Independent 21 April 2019, Sunday

'Xarabank' future still in the balance

Malta Independent Tuesday, 30 July 2013, 09:02 Last update: about 6 years ago

The future of Malta’s most popular and longest-lasting programme – Xarabank – is still very much in the balance as PBS prepares the new schedule of programmes that will start in October.

Xarabank has for many years topped the list of most-watched programmes, attracting more than 100,000 viewers per week, but after 16 years its future is not a certainty.

No decision has as yet been taken, but sources at the national broadcasting station told The Malta Independent online that the presence of certain people in the PBS corridors at Guardamangia are leading many to believe that there will be a major overhaul in the TVM list of programmes as from October, and this could also include Xarabank.

There are two trains of thought on the matter, the sources said. The first is that it would be wrong to eliminate a programme that is popular and generates much-needed revenue; the second is that the time has come for a change. This could either mean that Xarabank will continue in a different format, or else a new talk-show – one that is not presented by Peppi Azzopardi, who has led the show since its inception in 1997 – is offered to the public.  

Other changes are in the pipeline when PBS starts its autumn schedule.

The breakfast show TVAM – which in the past two years took the form of a journalistic exercise – will return in a different format and most likely with a new presenter.

Its near namesake – TVHemm – which used to be broadcast after the 6pm news, is already out the window as presenter Norman Vella has been told that his services at the national broadcasting station are no longer required. It is possible, however, that a similar show with a different name will make an appearance, given that TVHemm was the third most popular show between October and June.

Evening programmes are also expected to change from what viewers have grown accustomed to, the sources said.

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