Latvian Television pulls long-standing auto series

Latvian Television (LTV) will cease airing the popular Zebra series about motor vehicles and traffic, on air since 1994, as an ad paid for by the Riga City Council appeared on the series.

LTV said that on January 11 it found that ads paid for by the council had appeared on the series.

Although the announcement does not specify the episode or episodes in question, one episode concerns snow sweeping in Riga and features mayor Nils Ušakovs with Riga Transport Department head Emīls Jakrins driving a winter service vehicle.

LTV's agreement with SIA Zebra TV - an independent producer that makes the series - has a clause that forbids the company to receive money for its content or airing hidden ads.

While Una Ahuna-Ozola, representative of the Riga City Council, told LETA newswire that the agreement between the city and Zebra TV had ran out on December 10, 2016, so the episode aired on January 11 had not been paid for. She said that among the stories, for which the council paid the show's producers €3,999 without VAT, were related to security matters and the controversial tram line to the Skanste neighborhood in Rīga.

The series aired on the LTV1 channel for over twenty years on Wednesday evenings.

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