KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said Radio Televisyen Malaysia (RTM) has played a big role in promoting unity among the people of various races since it was set up 70 years ago.

He said RTM, which was established on April 1, 1946, had also fostered national development and cultivated the image of a government elected by the people.

"Ever since it was set up in 1946, RTM has played the role of a key disseminator of information which is truthful, accurate and current.

"Happy 70th anniversary, RTM Setia Bersama, Membina Negara," he said in a statement in conjunction with RTM's anniversary tomorrow.

The prime minister said besides being a broadcaster of news and information, RTM was also where the arts and creative industry in the country began, the birthplace of many new talents in the country.

Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak said despite being faced with various challenges and the latest technological developments, especially the emergence of the social media, RTM remained consistent in its role as a reliable and trusted source of information for the people.

He said RTM would continue being a key player in national broadcasting to develop the national creative industry and to create icons in various fields.

"RTM should act as the main medium to build the perception of the people and to promote loyalty and love for the country," he said in a statement here in conjunction with RTM's anniversary.

He said tomorrow would be the 70th year RTM had served the country and carved history in developing a nation which was peaceful, competitive and known throughout the world.

"Congratulations to the RTM family from the beginning until today, in working to promote the good image of the country internationally.

"Happy 70th anniversary, Setia Bersama Membina Negara," Salleh said.

On April 1, 1946, RTM or the Broadcasting Department was set up in Singapore and in the early 1950s, began temporary operations in Jalan Young (now Jalan Cenderasari) here.

It later moved to Federal House in Kuala Lumpur in 1956, leading to the development of broadcasting, and subsequently to the setting up of several radio stations throughout the country.

The broadcasting industry in Malaysia began a new chapter when Angkasapuri began its broadcast on Oct 6, 1969 before it was brought under the Information Ministry on Nov 17, 1969. --Bernama