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NUJ condemns assaults on journalists

Thu 2013-May-23 @ +08 16:36:48 pm
Activists chased, journalist hit at Adam vigil in Penang - Malaysiakini

Activists chased, journalist hit at Adam vigil in Penang – Malaysiakini

The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) condemns the attack on reporters by an unruly group, believed to be sent to distrupt the vigil attended by more than 100 nongovernmental organisation (NGO) members, students, social activists and several state Pakatan Rakyat leaders in Penang yesterday.

The candlelight vigil held in Esplanade was to show solidarity for student activist Adam Adli Abdul Halim who was arrested on Saturday (May 18) for alleged offences under the Sedition Act, Oriental Daily’s reporter Ooi Chun Nam and Sin Chew Daily reporter Cheah Chin Liang were assaulted by the group when they tried to help vigil organiser Sean Ho from being run over by an attacker on a motorcycle. They have since lodged a police report.

The Penang state government has written an official letter to police chief Abdul Rahim Hanafi urging him to seriously probe the various incidents of violence allegedly perpetrated by BN supporters since the general elections. – » Malaysiakini

In a similar gathering on Monday at the University Sains Malaysia’s Sungai Dua, two more journalists, Low Chia Ming of Malaysikini and Nanyang Siang Pau’s Bryan Lai Thiem Wah were also attacked and hit on their arms by an unruly group while they were taking photographs.

NUJ strongly urge the police to investigate and take prompt action against these group of troublemakers as there was absolutely no reason for them to physically harm the ournalists.

The reporters were assigned to cover the event and the group(s) could have surely identified them as members of the press on duty.

We will not condone such act of violence and inflicting injuries on journalists as these incidents would create a unhealthy trend where media workers are attacked while carrying out their public duty.

Nobody can take the law into his or her own hands. As working journalists covering such social events, they are called to uphold their professional duties. These kinds of act would interfere with press freedom, preventing them from carrying out their duties effectively.

|We also call on reporters and photographers especially NUJ members, covering possible “social unrests” to adhere to guidelines in our safety handbook.

Those assigned to cover such event have to get prepared for any eventuality and the book provides key guidance on the do’s and don’ts.

Schave Jerome de Rozario
NUJ general secretary

 

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3 Comments
  1. Joe Fernandez permalink
    Thu 2013-May-23 @ +08 16:47:16 pm 16:47

    I think it’s fair to say that most local journalists are suspect in the eyes of the people … http//fernandezjoe@blogspot.com
    Sent by DiGi from my BlackBerry® Smartphone

  2. Joe Black permalink
    Fri 2013-May-24 @ +08 07:47:55 am 07:47

    journalists??!

    Is there such a Breed of People in Malaysia? Rumour Mongers and Propagandists, Yes, Journalists? No.

    No such Profession exists here….

  3. Shadaan permalink
    Fri 2013-May-24 @ +08 23:15:02 pm 23:15

    I hope we are not becoming another Pakistan where Journalists are often attacked. This is the consequence of writing against the BN government. You are being punished for your reporting. The BN officials are acting as if they and their gangster agents were effectively above the law. They believe that they could detain or hurt people arbitrarily for long periods of time, and their law-breaking and corruption were almost never punished. I firmly believed nobody should be is above the law; everybody has to be held accountable.

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