KUALA LUMPUR: Members of the media have agreed to hold discussions on the establishment of the Malaysian Media Council.
The proposal was among the matters discussed by representatives of some 20 media organisations at the National Journalists Day celebration here yesterday.
Bernama general manager Zulkefli Salleh said the council would boost the image, quality and professionalism of the national media industry.
“It is high time Malaysia had its own media council as the matter has been discussed since the 1970s.
“The details will be scrutinised in line with developments in the media industry,” he told reporters at the Matrade Exhibition and Convention Centre here.
Zulkefli said the council would comprise members of the media and the public, as well as industry players, to ensure that the country’s media was on the right track.
Meanwhile, Berita Harian executive editor Ahmad Zaini Kamaruzzaman said further discussions should be held to ensure that the council will meet the needs of both print and electronic media.
“The proposal has been discussed for quite some time, but right now it must also take into consideration the factor of digital media,” he said.
The Sun managing director Freddie Ng said the council should consist entirely of media practitioners to ensure its credibility.
“We cannot have government representatives. If we have government representatives, the media council will lose its credibility. Government and the media must never hold hands.
“They are like two sides of a railway track. They are together but three feet apart, moving in a parallel direction. If the two sides of the track meet, there will be a derailment.
“So the rules and regulations to be set in the media council have to come from the media itself, not the government,” he said. – Bernama