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‘Report Radio Free Sarawak to police’

 | February 27, 2011

State minister Joseph Salang refuses to believe that Radio Free Sarawak is broadcasting from London.

KUCHING: Sarawakians are urged to report online broadcast station, Radio Free Sarawak (RFS), which has been highly critical of the state government to the police, home ministry or the Malaysian Communication and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) to enable an investigation to be carried out.

Said Information, Communication and Culture Deputy Minister Joseph Salang: “If in the course of investigation it is proven that the radio broadcast content contravenes the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998, MCMC can block its broadcast.

“So far there has been no report lodged. We urge the people to report RFS to the police, home ministry or MCMC.”

Salang, who refuses to believe that RFS is operating from London, described the station as operating illegally from Malacca.

“The station is illegal. MCMC has not issued any licence. I have been told that the rogue RFS operated from Malacca and not from London.

“That is what I have been told,” he told reporters in Sibu on Friday.

A few days ago London-based tabloid, Evening Standard, revealed the people behind the RFS. RFS is being operated by former British prime minister Gordon Brown’s sister in-law Clare Rewcastle Brown and a native Iban-speaking Dayak Peter John Jaban. The station, which was launched last November, is reportedly operating from London.

Clare Rewcastle, a former BBC journalists, also runs the blog Sarawak Report. In her interview, she reportedly said: “I use my blog and broadcasts to expose the outrageous deforestation which has seen 95% of Sarawak’s rainforest cut down and replaced by palm oil plantations which have enriched (Chief Minister) Taib  (Mahmud) and his family.”

Since RFS’ launch several opposition and state government leaders have been interviewed by the RFS on various current issues ranging from the state election, native customary rights (NCR) land to dam construction, oil palm plantations, abuse of power, corruption and cronism.

Of late, however, a few state leaders have come out to condemn the “incendiary” broadcast that has attacked Taib’s alleged abuse of power, corruption and NCR land-grabbing.

It had also highlighted Taib’s accumulation of overseas wealth.

Salang said that it was strange that people would want to do things that were harmful to their own country.

He urged the public to report individuals doing illegal things against the country to the police.

“We have the laws and a very good set of constitution,” he said.


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