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Did the Cabinet on Wednesday give the “greenlight” for a strategy to impose a clampdown on the Internet and blogs?
(Petaling Jaya, Sunday) : Two reports in the last two days raise the question whether the Cabinet on Wednesday had taken the policy decision giving the “green-light” for a strategy to impose a clampdown on the Internet and blogs.
The first were the comments by the Deputy Information Minister Datuk Zahid Hamidi to reporters when launching the Lanchang Carnival 2006 in Temerloh on Friday night that “the mainstream media should play a role in deflecting wild allegations and slanders spread through the internet and blogs”.
said the mainstream media should provide the correct explanation about
allegations spread through the internet or blogs, especially if the
allegations were targetted at the government and its policies.
These two comments by two deputy ministers on the Internet and blogs cannot be coincidental.
The Government must be mindful of the Bill of Guarantees when the Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) was launched a decade ago that there would be no Internet censorship, and it must not renege on its solemn undertaking on “no internet censorship” which was given not only to Malaysians but the whole world – or nobody would ever believe in any undertaking or guarantee given by the Malaysian government.
Ahmad Zahid’s proposal that “the mainstream media should play a role in deflecting wild allegations and slanders spread through the internet and blogs” raises two questions:
Nobody would quarrel with Ahmad Zahid’s advice to bloggers to have ethics, self-respect and be responsible in their writings, but when will Ahmad Zahid and the Barisan Nasional Ministers, Deputy Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries set such an example of ethics, self-respect and be responsible in the performance of their responsibilities?
Or to be more specific for the Information Ministry, when will the government-controlled media stop their unethical, dishonourable and irresponsible practices of hurling wild allegations and falsehoods against the Opposition and dissenting opinions?
Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic
Planning Commission Chairman
Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman