Monday, May 09, 2011

An anti-Press Freedom proposal by DAP State Assemblyperson - Be different PR and not like the BN

It is sad when an Opposition member of the Penang State Assembly is calling for the barring of a newspaper from the State Assembly - this is certainly against the Freedom of the Press and freedom of expression/speech. We were all very angry when the BN kept some media/journalist including Malaysiakini from official events and other functions - so, come on DAP, let us not also follow the bad examples of BN by these calls.

A way of showing displeasure is by the tabling and passing of a Motion (Usul) against the Utusan Malaysia or any report - but not barring the media (or journalist) from the State Legislative Assembly.

Respect Freedom of Speech and Expression. Respect Press Freedom. There may be some statements or positions that we may not agree with or are angry about - but there are ways to respond to this, and it certainly is not by curtailing the freedoms. Protest...Come out with a statement - a Motion of the House criticizing the reports - but not revoking permits, curtailing freedoms, etc...

Rep wants Utusan barred from Penang assembly
May 9, 11
A Penang DAP assemblyperson has called for an Umno-owned newspaper to be barred from covering proceedings at the state legislative assembly today.

His request comes a day after the state government, in collaboration with NGOs, celebrated the first anniversary of the Speakers Square - aimed at free speech - at the Esplanade.

penang state assembly 201108 jagdeep singhJagdeep Singh Deo (DAP-Datuk Keramat) (left) said Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein appears to be unable to do his job to sanction Utusan Malaysia for fanning serious racial sentiments.

“So let the state assembly show him that we can do his job by asking Utusan Malaysia to get out (of the assembly),” he said.

“They have been twisting (news) too much and I am very concerned about what they would do with the proceedings in the assembly,” he added.

Jagdeep said this when responding to State exco member for Health, Welfare, Caring Society and Environment Phee Boon Poh, who was speaking on the relevance of 1Malaysia Clinics while wrapping up the Yang di-Pertua Negeri's speech in the assembly today.

NONEThe lawyer was referring to the recent controversy over the Malay daily's front page news on Friday, suggesting that the DAP was colluding with a group of pastors to amend the country's official religion to pave the way for a Christian prime minister.

The article was based on blog postings in two pro-Umno blogs - and Marahku - which alleged that a DAP leader, Jelutong MP Jeff Ooi, had attended a secret meeting with a group of pastors for the said purpose in Penang.

Hishammuddin then joined in the fray to remark that the allegations were 'a serious matter' if they were true.

Information, Communications and Culture Minister Rais Yatim said that the postings should be investigated by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission.

Dozens of police reports have been lodged nationwide against Ooi, who is a DAP central committee member, by Malay rights pressure groups such as Pembela and Perkasa.

Ooi has denied the allegations and countered them by lodging a police report himself to urge the police to investigate the Malay daily and blogs.

Jagdeep said that Utusan Malaysia is yet to be satisfied with its '1Melayu 1Bumi' proposal, and has now alleged that his party has plans for a Christian state.

'Too much time on divisive politics'

He added that the Barisan Nasional has spent too much time on divisive politics to care for any other matter.

He decried that Hishammuddin, who is also Umno vice-president, has allowed the newspaper to continue fanning racial tension without taking any action against it.

NONERSN Rayer (DAP-Seri Delima) (left) questioned why Ooi was called by the police to give his statement over the issue when it was the news daily which had raised the sensitive issue.

“It is the reporter (from the newspaper) who wrote the report who should be arrested, questioned by the police, charged with sedition and put in jail,” charged Rayer.

House speaker Abdul Halim Hussein told the assemblypersons to reserve their comments for a special session of the Rights and Privileges Committee, which is expected to table their recommendations for Utusan Malaysia to be barred from the assembly proceedings.

The session is expected to be held tomorrow, when a decision would be sought from the assemblypersons on whether the pro-Umno newspaper should be given the appropriate punishment. - Malaysiakini, 9/5/2011, Rep wants Utusan barred from Penang assembly

1 comment:

gaik said...

Agree. If we uphold freedom of the press as a basic principle, let us remain true to our declaration.