Malaysian Media Council should be managed by media practitioners

Malaysian Media Council should be managed by media practitioners

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Media Council (MMM), to be set up soon, should be managed fully by media practitioners to avoid the public from having any prejudice against its real function, said National Journalist Award recipient Tan Sri Johan Jaaffar.

He said this was to ensure the regulatory body for the media would be “industry driven” instead of government driven.

“We do not want society to feel the media to be in a situation like before, where they felt controlled by the government, We want the people who are going to manage the council to be from the journalism community,” he said in an interview on Bernama News Channel’s “Ruang Bicara” programme tonight.

The veteran journalist also suggested a special unit or a press compliants division to be set up to hear complaints on unfair or imbalanced reports.

Efforts to set up an independent media regulatory body have been going on for sometime by local media practitioners to raise the standards of journalism and the profession, as well as provide space for arbitration of public complaints.

Meanwhile, Johan, who is also a former Editor-in-Chief of the Utusan Group and former chairman of Media Prima Berhad, called for a review of existing laws on the media with a view of abolishing those that curtailed media freedom.

He said the New Malaysia should be used as an opportunity and starting point to stop the government or political parties from having interests in media organisations.

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