TMI apologises to Rulers’ Council, retracts hudud report


(Malay Mail Online) – The Malaysian Insider today apologised to the Council of Rulers for a report last week that led to the arrest of four of its editors and the head of The Edge Media Group that owns the news portal.

In a note on its website today, TMI also said it has retracted the offending report.

“TMI would like to extend our profound apology to the Conference of Rulers for any wrong we have done with the publication of the March 25 article, which we have since removed,” the news portal said today.

As part of its clarification, TMI said it had sought to confirm the report’s contents that were based on an anonymous source, but did not receive a reply from the Conference of Rulers.

The news portal also questioned why it was singled out for investigation by the police and the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission when other media outlets had carried reports predicated on its now-withdrawn piece.

It further added that it had published in a timely manner a Bernama article that reported the Keeper of the Rulers’ Seal as denying the TMI article.

“We would like to give an assurance that there was never any bad intention on our part. We are loyal to the Nation and to their Highnesses, the Malay Rulers,” it ended.

On Monday, police arrested TMI’s managing editor Lionel Morais, Bahasa news editor Amin Iskandar and features and analysis editor Zulkifli Sulong and kept them overnight, before releasing them the next day after failing to obtain a remand order for the three.

On Tuesday, TMI chief executive Jahabar Sadiq and The Edge publisher Ho Kay Tat were arrested when they arrived at the Dang Wangi district police headquarters and kept overnight.

All five were arrested under the Sedition Act 1948 and the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 to assist in investigations.

TMI previously ran a report citing an unnamed source as claiming that the Conference of Rulers had rejected proposed legal amendments that would allow hudud to be enforced.

This was later denied by the Keeper of the Rulers’ Seal, who also lodged a police report over the article.

BN MPs then called for legal action against the news portal over the report and for reporting “twisted facts” in another article on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s speech on the Sedition Act during the Police Day celebration on March 25.