Malaysia's Internet regulator summons online news site chiefs over an editorial

The Malaysian Insight (TMI) chief executive and editor Jahabar Sadiq (pictured) was one of several people called up the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission.
The Malaysian Insight (TMI) chief executive and editor Jahabar Sadiq (pictured) was one of several people called up the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission. PHOTO: THE STAR

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia's Internet regulator on Tuesday (Dec 12) summoned the editor, director and several individuals from The Malaysian Insight (TMI) online news portal in an investigation over an article it published recently.

The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) said it was conducting the investigation after receiving "many complaints" from the public over the matter, The Star online news reported on Tuesday (Dec 12).

"MCMC urges everyone not to speculate and to give us space for a fair and just investigation," the regulator said in a statement on Tuesday.

According to TMI, the article being probed was an editorial titled A Sham Of An RCI, and one of those summoned was TMI chief executive and editor Jahabar Sadiq.

The report had slammed the findings of a government-backed Royal Commission of Inquiry, or RCI, into billions of dollars of losses caused foreign exchange trading in the 1990s, when former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad was in power and Anwar Ibrahim was his finance minister.

Both are now leaders of Malaysia's opposition alliance.

Reports carried by TMI deemed critical of the government was questioned last week by two speakers at the closely-watched Umno general assembly.

One Umno speaker asked the government to investigate the news site, and mentioned that TMI was owned by Faridah Begum, the sister of Mr Jahabar and the wife of Malaysia's Attorney-General Mohamed Apandi Ali.

TMI reported on Tuesday that officers from the Companies Commission of Malaysia visited the TMI office, but left after a short while, "after finding everything to be in order at the office".