|Lionel and Black with their lawyer Shahredzan Johan. Pic TMI|
I was wrong ... When I bumped into Jahabar Saddiq after last week's Friday prayers, he cheekily asked me:
"Would you like a photograph with me before I go in?".
He was referring, of course, to my previous day's blog posting All's not well at Angkasapuri (March 26) in which I slammed the authorities for not taking serious note at TMI for an article that could cause friction between its readers and the Monarchy, an important institution in this country.
My reaction to Jahabar's suggestion was sure. "Ah, you won't go in lah."
I was wrong! The police this morning arrested Jahabar, the TMI editor, and his boss Ho Kay Tat, and three other editors - Lionel Morais, Amin Shah "Black" Iskandar, and Zulkifli Sulong.
Now, I may not agree with TMI's brand of journalism most of the times: they spin instead of just report, but I certainly cannot agree with the arrest of the five journalists over the errorneous article they published (whether or not with the intent to ridicule the Council of Rulers or just because they were too lazy to double check with the party concerned).
But having said that, I must ask my fellow journalists and bloggers out there to please stick to the truth at all times when they report a news.
Journalists have a duty to report the truth. Not half-truths. Journalists are trained to verify all information they get all the time. It is highly irresponsible for a political portal like TMI, for example, to publish a statement purportedly issued by the Council of Rulers on a contentious issue without checking and confirming its authenticity.
My stand on this matter has been consistent and the five TMI editors aren't the frist to be facing a charge under the Sedition Act.
To be continued ...Back in 2007, when Raja Petra Kamaruddin and Syed Akbar Ali were charged with sedition, I came out in support of them in my capacity as President of the National All-Blogs Alliance ....