Malaysia top in Southeast Asia for press freedom

Malaysia top in Southeast Asia for press freedom

PUTRAJAYA: Malaysia is ranked first among Southeast Asia countries in the 2019 World Press Freedom Index, said Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

The index places Malaysia at 123 out of 145 countries in the world, he said.

This is Malaysia’s achievement as a result of the government commitment to the prevention of corruption, he said after chairing a meeting of the Special Cabinet Committee on Anti-Corruption here today.

“The commitment of the government of today in placing the prevention of corruption as a priority agenda has yielded results,” said Mahathir.

Mahathir said the National Anti-Corruption Plan (NACP) that has seen implementation for almost six months showed positive reaction as well as the confidence of the people and the international community in the seriousness of the government in addressing corruption, integrity and governance issues.

According to the perception survey on the effectiveness of corruption-prevention measures by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Series 13/2018, the people’s perception of the government’s seriousness in the matter rose by 11%, from 59.8% in 2016 to 70.8% last year, he said.

Mahathir also said that the Freedom of Information Act will be formulated to replace the Official Secrets Act.

He said sufficient time should be given to the formulation of the law by focusing on adequate engagement and outreach with the people.