Quick, quick, find a scapegoat! Blame someone!
So Puad names ‘usual suspects’ Malaysiakini, Malaysian Insider, Free Malaysia Today
Once again, online media is being made the punching bag, but this time, Free Malaysia Today is being added to the usual suspects Malaysiakini and Malaysian Insider.
What about Malay Mail Online?
No mention of Malay Mail Online? Like the others, it also doesn’t shy away from political coverage of all quarters. Why leave them out? There’s one diference: the other three “suspects” are not in Umno’s money web of interests. They are independently-owned: Mkini by its founders and backers; Insider by the Edge group of Tong Kooi Ong, and FMT linked to businesman John Soh.
Redberry’s owners, however, are allied to the Najib Razak band of brothers.
Trying to pass the blame
So it’s more convenient to turn the spotlight to the other three instead and hope people will forget that former NSTP chief A Kadir Jasin and others have asked why Umno-owned media attacked Daim. Who was the mastermind behind the coverage in Umno-owned Media Prima television and NSTP newspapers, and others, of opposition allegations about Daim Zainuddin’s wealth at a time when Mahathir Mohamad and friends brought up billion-ringgit questions about 1MDB, the government-owned investment company that is Najib’s brainchild?
Tit-for-tat, Puad asks instead who is the online “mastermind”? How convenient. But the unanswered question still remains: why did Media Prima dogs attack Daim, and by extension, Mahathir?
Underhanded attack on online media
Blaming the online media and calling for a government investigation is underhanded and a dirty trick, but a typical Umno response. When they can’t compete, they bring out the club to beat you senseless.
Online media covered all the Daim-Mahathir-Anwar-Najib merry-go-round extensively because it’s news, because people want to know what happened to the rakyat’s money, because people want to know what others are saying, because many voices are routinely blacked out and played down by Media Prima, NSTP, Utusan group, Bernama, and RTM, because such voices are routinely attacked and harrassed by every Umno-inspired web site, Umno-inspired harrassment group and the nobodies turned into Unit Media Baru heroes, and no one in government stands up for them.
Keep the federal government out of it
Umno’s power struggles are of its own making, and of no concern to federal government’s ministries or agencies. Instead it is the duty of federal agencies to investigate criminal wrong-doing by Umno politicians, and misuse of the rakyat’s money. It is not the job of the federal government to protect the sorry arses of any Umno fatcats, but to protect the interest of all 30 million Malaysians.
Let Umno solve its own problems. The federal government’s honest professional civil servants should reject out of hand such demand from the likes of Puad for government intervention on behalf of one faction in Umno. Were it not for online media, citizens would have nowhere to turn for some relief from the mindless posturing of Umno politicians and the racist bilge of self-appointed moralists that fills the pages of Media Prima and Utusan newspapers.
It’s not a crime. It’s democracy
If there is upheaval in Umno, the citizens have every right to know. Honest coverage will help them make up their minds at the next election (which, of course, is Umno’s fear). If politicians wish to try to split Umno, that is Umno’s problem, not a federal government problem. It is every citizen’s right to cheer them on if they wish. About 50% of the voting population have already done so in 2013. Puad should know. He was turfed out of Batu Pahat, falling by 1,300 votes to a PKR politician. Everyone politician outside Umno wants to see it fall. Not a few inside Ummno also want, at the very least, to see certain Umno politicians fall. Doesn’t Puad?
None of that is of any business of the federal government, or the home ministry or the Communications Commission. So what if Umno tears itself apart? So what if the media cover it extensively?
That’s not a crime. That’s democracy.
Malaysia is larger than Umno. If only Umno had that honesty of vision.