KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 15 – PAS vice-president Idris Ahmad and PAS Member of Parliament for Pendang Awang Hashim have been asked to issue a formal apology to Free Malaysia Today’s Minderjeet Kaur for their “nasty behaviour” to the reporter during an interview on Sunday,
Making the call, Kulai Member of Parliament Teo Nie Ching said the hostile attitude and personal attack of the two PAS leaders on the FMT reporter was shameful, disrespectful, and unprofessional.
Minderjeet, who had sought the comments of the PAS members on the sudden ban on gambling by the Kedah government, was instead asked if she would tolerate if her husband was a gambler by Idris while Awang insisted that she asked her questions in Bahasa Malaysia. He even asked if she was a Malaysian.
Teo said the responses from Idris and Awang reflected their inability to give a rational explanation for the gaming ban, but instead sought to “bullying tactics to deflect the question.”
“The act of bullying from a position of power is unbecoming of a minister and deputy minister, not only are they encouraging people under their influence, and the absence of consequences also indicates that this is an acceptable behaviour to emulate.
“The harassment and bullying of reporters in Malaysia is not something new, and this happens more often than not towards female reporters. On example was at the Press Conference after the Prasarana LRT accident, Tajuddin berated the foreign correspondent from Phoenix TV China, asking the correspondent where she was from, and then saying “China, no wonderlah”.
Teo urged the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia to look into the issue of the protection of journalists, saying they should not be intimidated in the course of their duties, and their reporting should also not be subjected to harassment.