Damansara, 22 Jan 20: After Pakatan Harapan's 5 successive by-election defeats, suddenly the DAP is to blame. Or at least that's the impression you get after finishing this excellent (though, to some people, not quite typical) Johan Jaafar piece Why DAP is a liability to PH.
"Johan wrote that? You sure? He sounds almost like most of us.""Yeah, it's the Tan Sri. Genuine.""Well, the DAP should have hired him instead of his son. He's got great suggestions on how DAP can NOT be a liability.""Still can. Two heads better than one, they say."
In short, you like it or not, Malaysia's latest Tokoh Wartawan Negara, got it right this time: "DAP should do a lot of soul searching from now."
Personally, I'm not so sure about his singling out Gobind Deol Singh, the Communications and Multimedia Minister. The other chap - the former Penang Chief Minister who got his corruption charges dropped in 2018 - he named in his article, yes. but Gobind?
Gobind Singh Deo is trying hard to prove his worth, but sadly he is caught in his own ignorance. Believing that PH government is not controlling the media is naïve. Just look at what happened to the group taking over the licenses of the Utusan group of newspapers and the taking over of Media Prima Bhd by a party close to Parti Bersatu. Is he oblivious to that?Gobind should spend more time working on abolishing many laws that are stifling press freedom and freedom of speech. It was part of the PH manifesto after all to abolish or repeal such laws. Even his good intention to set up a Media Council is being questioned. Why should it be initiated by the government and not the industry? Why the need for a Media Council now in the world of Internet and social media onslaught?
Johan was earlier quoted as describing Gobind's efforts to help set up the Media Council as "futile".
p.s. My thoughts on the Media Council, as one of the members of the protem commitee set up to oversee its establishment, in my next posting.