My article yesterday : TV3 scared to Aired Terengganu Crisis as main news.
Serve it right. I did not realize until now that the RTM is also in a state of denial about the situation in Terengganu. Wow how to be world class TV station as projected by Najib?
If RTM and TV3 have all the sufisticated gadgets in the world but have a mentality of a ‘peanut’, they better close shop. Otherwise the ‘Rakyat’ will help them close it.
RTM blackout on T’ganu revolt
State-owned RTM has blacked out news on the apparent boycott by 10 Terengganu state representatives of the state assembly sitting yesterday.
Though the issue was made headlines in every other primetime private news broadcast, there was no mention of the matter during RTM’s TV1 Tamil (7.30pm), Mandarin (8pm), local news (8.30pm) and main Malay (9pm) news broadcast last night.
Even the reactions from Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and his deputy, Muhyiddin Yassin, on the matter did not make it into the TV1 news broadcast.
According to sources, respective news desks within TV1 were given verbal instructions not to report the issue.
Contacted today, RTM director-general Ibrahim Yahaya said he was not aware of such a blackout and denied that there was a directive from “the top”.
However, he said a decision of that nature could have been made by the RTM news and current affairs director Mohamad Mat Husin.
“There were no orders. (It) all depends on the news and current affairs department… they make the decisions,” he said.
Ibrahim said that he was only responsible for policy matters while Mohamad was responsible for editorial content.
Mohamad could not be contacted for comment.
This move by RTM to censor the news – which was however reported extensively in the print media – puts to test Najib’s call for a “vibrant, free and informed media” soon after he assumed office earlier this month.
Delivering his speech on ‘Policy, Politics and the New Media – A New Way Forward’ at the MPI Press Awards Night on April 6 – just three days after becoming the new prime minister, Najib said:
“The media best serves the public interest when it goes beyond the superficial; when it asks the tough questions of the rumour mongers; when it does not lend credence to false innuendo and instead reports on facts and details – whether that is helpful to the government or not.”
The crisis in Terengganu developed yesterday when 10 state representatives – all of whom are from Umno – failed to attend the state assembly sitting.
The 10 did not admit that they were ‘boycotting’ the assembly in protest of Menteri Besar Ahmad Said’s leadership.
Instead they said that they will only attend the assembly sitting if their safety can be guaranteed, following ‘death threats’ received by three of them late Monday.
However, Najib, who is also Umno president, yesterday ordered the 10 to attend the assembly sitting.
The last day of the assembly session today started promptly at 9.30am with all the 32 state assemblypersons in attendance – 24 from the BN and eight from the opposition PAS.
A majority of people living in Terengganu rely on RTM for news and current affairs.