Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is set to make significant announcements regarding the future direction of the Malaysian media industry during the National Journalists’ Day (Hawana) celebration in Ipoh, Perak. With the industry facing multiple pressures, including economic challenges and technological advancements impacting newspaper publishing, the government has been engaged in ongoing discussions to address these issues. Communication and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil highlighted the importance of sustaining the media industry and ensuring the welfare of media practitioners, emphasizing that the prime minister’s keynote address at Hawana will shed light on the government’s plans for the industry.
Focus on the Malaysian Media Council
One of the key topics expected to be addressed during the prime minister’s speech is the establishment of the Malaysian Media Council. This council aims to play a pivotal role in shaping and regulating the media landscape in the country. Its establishment has been eagerly anticipated and is seen as a crucial step in promoting professionalism, ethical standards, and media freedom.
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Celebrating Journalists and Media Freedom
The three-day Hawana 2023 celebration, themed “Media Bebas, Tunjang Demokrasi” (Free Media, Pillar of Democracy), commenced with the aim of reaffirming the importance of media freedom and its role in upholding democracy. The celebration serves as a platform to recognize and honor journalists for their vital contributions to society. The highlight of the event will be the prime minister’s participation, symbolizing the government’s commitment to supporting and empowering the media industry.
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Commemorating National Journalists’ Day
The significance of National Journalists’ Day, observed on May 29, dates back to the publication of the first edition of the Malay newspaper, Utusan Melayu, on May 29, 1939. The day serves as a reminder of the rich history and contributions of the Malaysian media industry. The presence of the Sultan of Perak and Raja Permaisuri during the celebration further exemplifies the importance placed on fostering a close relationship between the media and the monarchy, as they will join media professionals in a special dining event.