KUALA LUMPUR, April 11 — Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob has warned today that stern action would be taken against news outfits which report “confusing and inaccurate” articles regarding government statements.
In a press conference in Putrajaya which was broadcast live, the defence minister said that the government viewed such inaccuracies seriously, with the police and the Communications and Multimedia Ministry monitoring such offences.
“We read a lot of news, especially in news portals, online, which report news which are inaccurate and untrue,” he said.
“Especially those which involve official statements from the government. The government views the actions done by them seriously, because the news which are false, news which are inaccurate, can confuse the public, and hence cause the people to worry.
“So in the meeting this morning, it was decided that KKMM and the police will take stern action against news portals which publish news which are confusing and inaccurate,” he added, advising news agencies to be more ethical in reporting.
Ismail Sabri had previously attacked a journalist for alleged “bad intentions”, after he was reported saying migrant workers in Selangor Mansion and Malayan Mansion needed to buy their own food, and that it was not the responsibility of Putrajaya.
He denied saying the workers will not be given any food, even as he insisted that their respective embassies must take responsibility for their own citizens rather than the federal government, unlike other areas under the enhanced movement control order (EMCO).
Civil societies and Lembah Pantai MP Fahmi Fadzil have today criticised Putrajaya and the Information Department for classifying insults towards the ruling government and its leaders as possible “fake news”.