Home Media statements Charter 2000-Aliran Suspending expression, violating democracy

Suspending expression, violating democracy

Follow us on our Malay and English WhatsApp, Telegram, Instagram, Tiktok and Youtube channels.

The sudden suspensions of Suara Keadilan and Harakah for the next three months are blatant violations of the principle of freedom of the press. What is disturbing is that the move denies Parti Keadilan Rakyat and Pas – two opposition political parties whose fortunes are on the rise – their fundamental democratic right to disseminate their ideologies and views to their membership and the wider public. These suspensions are clearly meant to frustrate these parties from reaching out to and influencing Malaysians of all walks of life.

The suspensions are obviously politically motivated coming as they do in the run-up to three crucial by-elections, which would have a great negative impact on Najib should the Barisan Nasional be defeated. If the Pakatan were to win these three by-elections it would mean five straight losses for BN which would be a terrible and demoralising blow.  

What’s also worrying is that the suspensions raise an equally important question: is this the shape of things to come under the new Najib administration?

The denial of press passes to a string of news websites intending to cover the on-going Umno general assembly seems to confirm this fear. The suspensions of the party organs and the denial of press passes can also be read as the administration trying to criminalise legitimate criticism, dissent and democracy.

Dr Mustafa K Anuar & Anil Netto
Charter 2000-Aliran

25 March 2009


The views expressed in Aliran's media statements and the NGO statements we have endorsed reflect Aliran's official stand. Views and opinions expressed in other pieces published here do not necessarily reflect Aliran's official position.

AGENDA RAKYAT - Lima perkara utama
  1. Tegakkan maruah serta kualiti kehidupan rakyat
  2. Galakkan pembangunan saksama, lestari serta tangani krisis alam sekitar
  3. Raikan kerencaman dan keterangkuman
  4. Selamatkan demokrasi dan angkatkan keluhuran undang-undang
  5. Lawan rasuah dan kronisme
Support our work by making a donation. Tap to download the QR code below and scan this QR code from Gallery by using TnG e-wallet or most banking apps:
Avatar photo
Dr Mustafa K Anuar, a longtime executive committee member and former honorary secretary of Aliran, is, co-editor of our newsletter. He obtained his PhD from City, University of London and is particularly interested in press freedom and freedom of expression issues. These days, he is a a senior journalist with an online media portal
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x