MTUC strongly condemn the decision of the Ministry to suspend the publication of Edge for 3 months. MTUC also condemns any restriction on press freedom. It is a duty of any journalist to expose any suspected wrong doing, be it by individual or people in power. The suspension of the media publication only reflects the decrease in the freedom of Information. Every workman has a right to know how public funds are being utilised for the benefit of the public as a whole. The Edge’s publication has done nothing more than alerting the public based on evidence obtained by them that there are high probabilities of misuse of public fund.
Instead of investigating on the report and documents obtained by Edge, the Publication is immediately slapped with suspension order. Suspension based on one articles has further affected the rights of about 300 workers covering other news.
Noticing that the Edge has gone extensively to explain their findings, it only indicates that they are more willing to cooperate and assist in any investigation. In any event, if the media is suspected of any false reporting, suspension is not the solution as it seen as a form of punishment before an investigation is complete and consequently affecting the rights of 300 workers losing their 3 months earning.
MTUC is of the view that the Edge Publication has only acted within its democratic boundaries. The suspension is premature and without any evidence in support to show otherwise. Thus, we urge the Ministry to re-examine the suspension order and lift its band until at least the investigation on the Media is completed. Clamping down on media is not the way forward for a democratic society.
N. Gopal Kishnam Secretary General