Do Umno/BN want Malaysia to slide down the slippery slope to be a failed state by appointing an UMNO stooge to be Chairman of MCMC?
For nine days since the beginning of the year, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) has been without a head, as the former Chairman Mohamed Sharil Tarmizi had been informed that his contract which expired on Dec. 31, 2014 would not be renewed.
Utusan Malaysia editor Zulkifli Jalil said in a commentary that Sharil’s contract was not renewed because MCMC under his watch had given free reign to those who had allegedly incited racial hatred, thereby failing in its role as a regulator.
Probably Sharil should have acted firmly against those who had exploited the cyberspace and misused and abused the social media with lies and falsehoods to incite racial and religious hatred, conflict and tension.
And top of the list of those guilty of such transgressions on the Internet in the past few years when Sharil was Chairman of MCMC would be the UMNO mouthpiece, Utusan Malaysia and the army of UMNO cybertroopers, who had no qualms or compunctions in disseminating lies and falsehoods on the Internet to incite racial and religious hatred, conflict and tension.
But Utusan Malaysia, the UMNO hardliners and cybertroopers would have squealed the loudest if Sharil had acted professionally and impartially against Utusan Malaysia and the UMNO cybertroopers who were the chief culprits in the misuse and abuse of social media to incite racial and religious hatred in keeping with their larger ulterior objective to conjure imaginary fears, threats, bogeys and enemies that the Malays and Islam are under siege and only UMNO could save them.
What Utusan Malaysia and the UMNO hardliners and cybertroopers wanted was for MCMC to harass and victimise pro-Pakatan Rakyat websites while leaving the pro-UMNO websites alone, although it were the latter who were most guilty of the inflammatory and incendiary lies and falsehoods on the Internet to polarise racial and religious situation in the country.
I am not happy with Sharil as MCMC Chairman as he had not been firm enough with Utusan Malaysia, UMNO hardliners and cybertroopers when they abused the social media with their racist and religious venom and hatred.
The Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and the Communications and Multimedia Minister, Datuk Ahmad Shabery Cheek would have to decide whether UMNO/BN want Malaysia to slide down the slippery slope to be a failed state by appointing an UMNO stooge to be Chairman of MCMC, who would not only be subservient to the Prime Minister and the responsible Minister concerned, but who will have to be servile to Utusan Malaysia and UMNO vested interests – turning the MCMC into an UCMC, i.e. from Malaysian Multi-media and Communications Commission into an UMNO Multimedia and Communications Commission.
The position of MCMC Chairman is also much coveted due to its influence on the lucrative award for communications tower contracts that are to be built in rural areas.
In the second quarter of this year, the MCMC will award the contract for 600 towers to be built in rural areas. The contract for the first 400 towers came up to around RM900 million (US$252 million). The next phase will cost more than RM1.3 billion (US$360 million).
Will the appointment of an UMNO stooge as Chairman of MCMC open the floodgates for the parcelling out of the RM2.2 billion cash-rich opportunities among the UMNO cronies – which will drive Malaysia’s ranking in the Transparency International Corruption Perception Index to a new low in the coming years?
If the two above-mentioned factors are the key considerations for the non-renewal of Sharil’s contract as Chairman of MCMC, then Malaysia can forget about the country developing into a major global centre and hub for communications and multimedia information and content services or promoting a civil society where information-based services will provide the basis of continuing enhancement to quality of work and life, for we will be well on our way to be a failed state.