RTHK said yesterday it had no plans to revive the issue of corporatisation after the recent debate over its role as a public broadcaster. Director of Broadcasting Chu Pui-hing said the issue was 'not on the agenda in the foreseeable future', but welcomed further discussion and stressed other options should be explored. A proposal to turn RTHK into a BBC-style broadcaster was first raised in 1984 but shelved because of political sensitivity in the run-up to the handover. The issue of RTHK's independence re-emerged this month when Chief Executive Tung Chee-hwa described its current affairs programme Headliner as being in bad taste after his administration was compared to the Taleban regime in Afghanistan. The row prompted RTHK to commission a focus group to examine the public's views on satirical programmes. Officials hope it will be completed in two months. Myrna Whitworth, programme director of the Voice of America, said at a reception before the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union general assembly yesterday that she supported RTHK maintaining editorial independence. The US state-funded broadcaster was recently warned by the State Department after it carried an excerpt of an interview with a Taleban military leader. Ms Whitworth said: 'I think in a democratic society where you have thinking people, you have to have a press that forgives all points of view. 'Sometimes those views may be opposing the government. But as long as you keep things in context and you are responsible, that's the role of a journalist in a free society.' Forever Sze Wing-yuen, senior executive producer of Headliner, said he had been more 'alert' in his work following the controversy. He said he would consider improving programmes based on the outcome of the focus group study, but dismissed fears it was a step towards gagging freedom of expression.