Two Penang Umno reps don’t buy Utusan report

Susan Loone | May 10, 11

Two Penang Umno assemblypersons said today they do not believe last Saturday’s front page report in Utusan Malaysia that DAP and a group of Christian pastors were plotting to establish the country as a Christian state.

During the tabling of a motion to bar the Umno-owned news daily from covering the next state assembly sittings, Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng had asked Hilmi Yahya (BN-Teluk Bahang) if he believed the report.

Lim, who tabled the motion against Utusan over a report on Nov 11 last year on the renovation cost of his official residence, went on to condemn the Malay daily for frequently raising sensitive issues to cause divisions among the different races in the country.

Hilmi had earlier admitted that Umno may be Utusan’s biggest shareholder, but it may not necessarily condone everything the newspaper does.

He said Utusan, like any other newspaper, was a business entity and prone to sensationalising its articles to increase readership.

“But let’s wait for the outcome of the investigation and see who had actually spun the news,” he added.

Jagdeep Singh Deo (DAP-Datuk Keramat) was rather excited hearing this and pressed Hilmi to admit that the controversial report was a “spin to create racial issues”.

He urged Hilmi, as an Umno leader, to ensure that the newspaper stopped repeating such mistakes as these were detrimental to multireligious and multiracial Malaysia.

“You say other papers sensationalise issues, but we do not see others doing it, only Utusan… so what action is Umno going to take to make sure this does not happen again?” Jagdeep asked.

‘We have lived together in harmony’

Lim then asked Hilmi for his personal view if he believed the report, which was based on unverified information posted on two pro-Umno blogs.

“As a Malaysian citizen, when I first read the report, I did not believe at all,” said Hilmi.

“We have lived together in harmony with all races for a long time already… so let’s wait for the investigation and then we can verify who did this… I believe we are all rational,” he added.

Lim then exclaimed “syabas!” and went on to ask another Umno assemblyperson if he believed in the report.

Muhammad Farid Saad (BN-Pulau Betong) was rather coy in his reply, saying “I want a peaceful country.”

When Lim pressed him further, Farid said, “Lets wait for the investigation.”.

Asked to answer truthfully from his heart, Farid said: “I do not believe the report.”

Hilmi and Farid were the only Umno assemblypersons in the house when the motion to bar Utusan from covering the next sitting of the assembly was tabled. The motion was later passed.

  1. #1 by Godfather on Tuesday, 10 May 2011 - 7:46 pm

    What has UMNO got to lose by spreading the lies and deceit ? If it doesn’t work because no one believes in it, then they will try something else.

    Remember that this is a test of Najib’s leadership – and the test isn’t coming from the non-Malays or from the Opposition. The test is coming from within UMNO.

  2. #2 by habis on Tuesday, 10 May 2011 - 7:56 pm

    Bravos to the 2 UNMO state assembly for their frank admission and I hope YB Hisamuddin take note of it.Raising sensitive inflammatory issue demands an immdeiate ISA action but at last one commited by UMNO cohorts is an exception and being a business entity demands a greater sense of responsiblity all the more inexcusable.Please for God sake do not destroy the harmonious peace loving country for UNMO selfish political survival cause there are other malay based parties who can perform a better job with the cooperation of the nons for a MORE PROPEROUS MALAYSIA.

  3. #3 by monsterball on Wednesday, 11 May 2011 - 4:19 am

    Two wrongs do not make one right.. “cool it”…so said Najib.
    But this is a very serious accusation made by Utusan.
    Najib cannot just say “cool it” and forget who started it.
    He is.. ..indirectly protecting Utusan.
    And this is not the type of so call…sensational news to sell papers.
    There is no two wrongs here.
    It is one wrong with the other defending.
    Who is wrong?
    Will Najib act and punish Utusan?
    He has no guts to do that.
    He is just a gas bag.

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