Former journalists of Umno-owned newspaper Utusan Melayu set up independent Malaysian news site

The online site currently has 22 contributors, with their main focus being news analyses.
The online site currently has 22 contributors, with their main focus being news analyses.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM BEBASNEWS.MY

KUALA LUMPUR (BERNAMA) - A group of former journalists from an Umno-owned newspaper has started an independent news site, after leaving the company in a voluntary separation scheme.

Former journalists from the Malay-language Utusan Melayu group launched bebasnews.my, meaning independent news in Malay, last Saturday (Dec 15).

Former assistant editor-in-chief of the Utusan group, Datuk Zaini Hassan, who is one of the founders of the news portal, said the idea was mooted after he received various suggestions on optimising the talents of the former Utusan journalists.

Most of the journalists had served Utusan for a long time and have extensive experience, he said.

Mr Zaini said the online site currently has 22 contributors, with their main focus being news analyses.

"For a start, this will be a news portal where our contributors will comment on news which have been reported by the mainstream media.

"In this way we do not have to go out to cover news like the other media. They are free to work online from anywhere," he told Bernama.

He said bebasnews.my will also carry national news on politics, the economy as well foreign news in both Malay and English languages.

He said the site is independent and is not tied to any political party.

The writers contribute on a voluntary basis, as "we do not pay the contributors", he said, adding that "we have received overwhelming response, though we have just started on Saturday".