Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad clarified in a press conference today, 14 May that no action will be taken against media, even if they report on something that the Government does not like
"They can report. Even if the Government does not like to hear it, they are free to report. No action will be taken against them," he said yesterday, according to The Star.
As long as reports are based on facts, Dr. Mahathir assured that the Government would not restrict the media.
"In the previous regime, we felt there was restriction. Some newspapers may be for or against something but we will not block their reports as long as these have basis," he added.
With that said, action will be taken against those who publish fake news with an intention to stir tension
"If they report fake news to deliberately cause chaos or tension, we will deal with them using specific laws," said Dr Mahathir.
He warned that, "Any effort to instigate the public to quarrel and so on will not be allowed."
"Proper definitions" for the law will be provided so that the public and media will be clear on what constitutes as fake news, Dr. Mahathir said yesterday, 13 May
The controversial Anti-Fake News law was claimed to have been passed before elections to prevent opposition parties from speaking against the Government, Dr. Mahathir conveyed about a month ago during a press conference.
"There are existing laws that are sufficient but by having this law, it gives the government the power to arrest those who criticise the government," he told reporters, according to The Malay Mail Online.
Meanwhile, a viral statement claiming that GST will be abolished in June was discovered to be "fake news":
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