UMNO is the country’s biggest manufacturer of “fake news” through its owned or controlled “mainstream media” especially Utusan Malaysia – will it direct them to stop publishing “fake news”?

Yesterday, the Minister for Communications and Multimedia, Datuk Seri Salleh Said Keruak called on Malaysians to defend the nation from false news.

I instantly responded in a tweet: “Only time so far I agree with Salleh”.

However, I had added a caveat: “I oppose all fake news, whether against DAP and Pakatan Harapan or Umno/BN leaders.

“Will Salleh/MCMC (Malaysian Communication and Multimedia Commission) oppose all fake news, even those against DAP/Harapan leaders?”

In response, Salleh thanked me for backing his call on Malaysians to help counter fake news and information but did not specifically address the issues I raised, deflecting them with a very officious position that MCMC would make a similar stand on the fake news which targets the opposition.

He said: “The law is clear. If a report is lodged with MCMC, the necessary action would be taken.”

In the country today, the biggest manufacturer of “fake news” is none other than UMNO/BN through its owned or controlled “mainstream media”, led by UMNO-owned Utusan Malaysia.

For over 40 years from 1965, I did not exist as far as Utusan Malaysia was concerned, as all my statements, speeches and activities were blacked out in its pages, but in the past ten years since the 2008 General Election in March 2008, I became “big news” in Utusan Malaysia, with my photographs and reports getting huge play in the Utusan Malaysia, but not true news, but fake news.

I was painted as quite a devil, a puaka, even jembalang; that I am anti-Malay, anti-Islam; cause of May 13, 1969 riots; a communist (although astute observes will note that this communist “label” had not been used recently after Najib tried to get very pally with China, with UMNO invited to speak at the 19th Communist Party of China national congress next week); a stooge of foreign powers (although it was Najib who paid homage to US President Trump at the White House, offering to “strengthen” American economy with Malaysia’s puny economy!); that I dominate Pakatan Harapan and made other leaders like Tun Mahathir Mohamad, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Datuk Seri Wan Azizah, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Datuk Seri Azmin Ali, Mohamad Sabu and Husam Musa into my stooges and puppets.

Are these facts and truth or are they lies and fake news?

It is incontrovertible that UMNO is the country’s biggest manufacturer of “fake news” through its owned or controlled “mainstream media” especially Utusan Malaysia.

If UMNO leaders are sincere in wanting to fight and expose “fake news”, as expressed by Salleh yesterday, is UMNIO prepared to direct its owned or controlled “mainstream media” to stop publishing “fake news”?

I want here to challenge Salleh to a series of “Fake News Confrontation” between Barisan Nasional and Pakatan Harapan leaders, which should be telecast live, starting with an initial series of “Fake News Confrontation” between Salleh and myself.

In these series of “Fake News Confrontation” between Salleh and myself, each side will produce five “fake news” to be either confirmed as true and factual or debunked as pure “fake news”.

Among the “fake news” which had been hurled against me include Tun Mahathir’s RM1 billion bribe to me, my intention to become the Prime Minister of Malaysia, that DAP wants to “Christianise” Malaysia and that I am anti-Malay and anti-Islam.

Let these “fake news” be the subject of such “Fake News Confrontation” so that we fight and expose the “fake news” all over the country.

Lim Kit Siang DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Gelang Patah