On our media’s ‘buta’ sickness

by Hajjah Norzehan

I have stopped buying newspapers run by UMNO, MCA and MIC (unable to read Tamil anyway) but would occasionally read them when there are nothing else to do to kill time like while waiting for the bus or taxi that took ages to come at their designated stops. I would go through the papers left by previous passengers and would only read sensible stuffs in the inner pages like agro-tek.

Since 2008, I have stopped reading or watching the news and now I am seriously thinking of stopping subscribing to Astro. This cable network monopolizes and presents so-called news from TV1, 2, 3, 7, 8 and 9; show re-runs after re-runs of sitcoms and movies from stone-age era and unable to provide reception come showers or torrential rain.

Are there no real journalists or intelligent newscasters who can carry out decent reporting before the news was printed or read out to the public? For example during the hazy season, not one news agent from any of the above stations were reporting from the scene of the various fire (they could actually choose which burning plantation or forest to go) or show aerial photographs which show massive plantation areas owned by Malaysian or Singaporean on fire or local farmers burning their tiny stretch of farmlands.

Day in day out we are fed with news not worthy of breaking news. Where are the news about Zahid Hamidi and Khalid Abu Bakar? These two high ranking personnel are not qualified to lead law enforcements offices because they are implicated in cases that break the laws of Malaysia. Where are the news on the GE13 indelible ink, permanent food coloring and invisible ink supplier fiasco? The two top heads of EC have failed big time and should be suspended without pay or fired immediately.

Owners of TV stations and printed media not only pledge allegiance to the ruling government but must show how loyal they are; that their head editors, journalists and newscasters abandoned all work ethics, integrity and professionalism in delivering what are real news, what are make-up propaganda, lies or slander.

This is the result of having a Prime Minister who is buta hati (read no conscience to rule in just and fair manner); his ministers membuta (read sleeping on the job) and his ardent supporters menyokong membabi buta (read support anything related to BN and turn a blind eye and deaf ear to anything bad and ugly done by BN).

* The views expressed here are the personal opinion of the columnist and this article first appeared in Harakah

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