Foreign Minister’s mental blog

Foreign Minister Rais Yatim has exhibited his desire for the government to monitor and control bloggers.

Rais has reportedly called for the creation of an internal council or mechanism to monitor bloggers.

He said that in terms of law, the Sedition Act was sufficient but he was worried about enforcement which was not up to the mark and having such a council would help in enforcement.

He said that the arms of the law might not be long enough to reach bloggers outside the country but if the blogger was in the country, something could be done and it was all a question of will.

He told reporters this when asked to comment on a blog posting calling on the people to display their unhappiness with what is going on in the government by flying the national flag upside down.

It appears that Rais is quick to find an excuse to make use of the Sedition Act as a way of silencing bloggers in general.

In any case, Rais’s view certainly doesn’t sit comfortably with the one publicly expressed by his fellow Cabinet member, Information Minister Shabery Cheek, recently as shown below:

He said citizen journalists acted as a watchdog to the mainstream media by analysing, observing and interpreting materials published by the mainstream media, highlighting their inaccuracies, spins and outright lies.

Ahmad Shabery also said that citizen journalists complemented the mainstream media and “this augurs well for the democratisation of information.”

He said that there were times when professional journalists in the mainstream media were taken to task by citizen journalists for sloppy reporting and misleading editorials.

“This is a value that should be duly recognised and applauded by all of us, politicians, administrators and lawmakers alike. This will allow for feedback mechanism of any new policy, plan or programme,” he said.

Is Rais’s view indicative of the shape of things to come in Malaysia’s blogosphere?

Incidentally, blogger “Penarik Beca”, whose real name is Abu Bakar Mohd. Rashid, has just been released on police bail. See here.


6 Responses to “Foreign Minister’s mental blog”

  1. 1 mugabe 9 August 2008 at 8:39 am

    Rais Yatim PhD. is a very pretensious person. He was not like this before he got his PhD.

    Dr Rais Yatim would do a lot of good if he can choose between becoming a true scholar of jurisprudence or a politico-legal person.

    He is talking to everybody including Dr Condolezza Rice, a doctrate in Russian Studies and trying to tell her about our behviour in legal matters.

    There is a VAST difference between what is written in the Constitution and the Statutes Book and the way Judges and Police actually behave.

    The CULPRIT is none other than Politicians like Dr Rais Yatim and his UMNO f(r)iends. They have singly and collectively set about to undermine the very Rule of Law and Justice by their machinations, conspiracy and plots to get to their opponents, be they our own citizens or foreigners.

    Dr Rais Yatim might as well spend his last period of al dunya becoming a good Muslim and be truthfully to himself and desist from “SUBAHAT” from “Mungkar”.

  2. 2 patek1472 9 August 2008 at 9:19 am

    Q13. Free speech is a right of all Malaysians. (True or False)
    Kebebasan bersuara adalah hak semua rakyat Malaysia. (Betul atau Salah)

    Q15. Liberty is a right of all Malaysians. (True or False)
    Kebebasan diri adalah hak semua rakyat Malaysia. (Betul atau Salah)

    Q41. All bloggers are liars. (True or False)
    Semua bloggers adalah pembohong. (Betul atau Salah)

    Q48. Freedom can only exist in the mind, not in real life. (True or False)
    Kebebasan Cuma didapati dalam minda, tidak di dunia nyata. (Betul atau Salah)

    Answers at
    Jawapan di

  3. 3 Samuel Goh Kim Eng 9 August 2008 at 11:30 am

    Why should some people be afraid of legal, intellectual discourse

    Only harbouring the potential fear that everything will go off course

    When there are those who seek answers as a matter of grave cause

    Let closed caves be left behind for those who desire to be off clause

    (C) Samuel Goh Kim Eng – 090808

    Sat. 9th Aug. 2008.

  4. 4 Antares 9 August 2008 at 2:42 pm

    As Sodomy II unravels into an embarrassing tangle of legal and judicial impossibilities and dead-ends (indicative, perhaps, of the abysmal wretchedness and moral darkness of the 4th floor boys under the leadership of the increasingly detestable KJ), all BN ministers who continue to serve the evil Umno agenda are condemning themselves to political oblivion in the New Era of Ketuanan Rakyat just around the corner. This latest inane utterance by Rais will lead to his final and inevitable downfall. Umno is beyond any doubt a racist Party.

  5. 5 tomthumb 9 August 2008 at 2:54 pm

    Rais Yatim is more worried about himself than anything else.
    El Gore is not talking for America, he is talking about what is
    right and what is wrong. Ras Yatim has to talk something otherwise he
    will be jobless soon. Give some rice to the poor Yatim.

  6. 6 Patricia 11 August 2008 at 9:36 am

    What is sorely lacking in Malaysia is reasoned thought. Thinking skills appear to have given the majority of us a miss!

    What the blogs help us do is THINK. They offer an alternative view of the very same issues carried by the msm, and very often carry important news about what is happening in our own country, and NOT carried by the msm.

    Does the minister believe that if we don’t know about something, it therefore does not exist? Like in China, where if you Google ‘Tianenmen Square’ nothing appears – is this meant to tell the chinese and visitors alike that that incident was a figment of their imagination?

    It is time we grew up. And growing up means we have to hear the bad news as well as the good news.

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