Charter 2000-Aliran hails the unwavering and principled stand taken by Malaysiakini not to pull down the two videos related to the controversial cow-head demonstration in Shah Alam recently.
Such a principled move is praiseworthy especially when the online newspaper is now under tremendous pressure from the Malaysian Communication and Multimedia Commission to withdraw the said videos from public viewing.
This stand has great political significance for the journalists and their commitment to truth should not be allowed to be trampled upon by the powers-that-be that do not respect, let alone appreciate the fundamental values pertaining to justice, freedom of expression and the media’s responsibility to speak the truth and shame the devil. Additionally, the MCMC’s action makes a mockery of the Prime Minister Najib Razak’s recent guarantee that there will be no censorship of the Internet.
The act of metaphorically killing the messenger is equally disturbing in that it is aimed at intimidating conscientious journalists from reporting the truth without fear or favour. Needless to say, Malaysiakini merely reported what actually took place and exposed the racist and religiously insensitive remarks and actions of certain misguided individuals who claimed to have done what they did in the name of Islam and Muslims.
To be sure, the stand taken by the news portal has wide repercussions within the journalistic fraternity as well as the civil society in Malaysia.
We urge the MCMC to desist from harassing the editorial personnel of Malaysiakini.
Dr Mustafa K Anuar & Anil Netto
9 September 2009