Published on Thursday, 07 February 2013 16:17
The upcoming new media law should have a section to punish those who block people’s right to know, Thura Aung Ko, chairman of Judicial and Legal Committee of Lower House, said on February 2.
He pledged the attempt to remove the laws which restrict the press freedom during the judicial and legal discussion with his committee members, Myanmar Journalist Council and Lawyers Network at the
head-office building of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry.
Thura Aung Ko urged to remove the Official Secret Act since it has no clear criteria on the so-called secret matters. The act prohibits possess, receive or communicate any information of which the disclosure may affect sovereignty and integrity of the state.
“Media is achieving certain degree of freedom. They must have not only roles and responsibilities but also ethics. Meanwhile, they are stilling facing some blockades in their ways for getting information. There should be a law which can sue those who block the information,” Aung Ko said.
Non of more than 800 laws in the country adopted the word ‘fourth pillar’ for media recognition, he said and noted that at least media law should have such word to give high status for media people.
Ko Ko from Myanmar Journalist Council advocated the parliamentarian’s plea saying that in addition to the three pillars (administration, legislation and judiciary) which are central to a democratic nation, the word
‘fourth pillar’ and its responsibilities should be included even in the Constitution of the State.
Protect media right is equivalent to protection of people right to know, he said.
In a section of the first draft of media law, the authorities claim that it gives freedom to media. The new law abolishes the previous requirement by 1962 Publishers Law to accept the intervention of press council in case of conflicts between the media and individuals who are dissatisfied of reporting.
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