Malaysian Insider reported, "Censors have blacked out parts of an article in the latest edition of The Economist which had called Putrajaya’s handling of the Bersih rally overzealous, even as the Najib administration struggles to deflect the barrage of criticisms in the international media about the government crackdown.
Among the parts blacked out are mentions of the heavy-handedness of the police and the accusation that the government withdrew its offer to protesters to use a stadium for the rally.
The article titled “Taken to the cleaners — an overzealous government response to an opposition rally” chronicles the chaos on July 9 when police fired tear gas and water cannon to disperse the tens of thousands who took to the city’s streets here to demand electoral reforms.
Although the full article is available online, the Home Ministry still inked out four lines in the article, one of which notably reported on the death of one man during the rally."
This is not the only form of censorship I have experienced since Bersih 2.0. Telekom Malaysia's Hypp TV did the same to interrupt a segment of Channel News Asia coverage on Bersih 2.0 too.
Farish Noor is correct to express his disappointment and astonishment. Yes, there is a full online version available.
Instead of providing a full, credible and transparent report on possible police abuses during the demonstration, the government has chosen to protect and defend the men in blue entirely.
This is an example of another PR boo-boo and a lapse of concentration from the ruling government.
The right action is to engage and conduct a fair and open discourse with affected parties. What is there for the government/ruling coalition to lose by being democratic, civilised and engaging?
The manner some of the state apparatus are behaving, public institutions and media, is going to make the whole situation even worse.
I wonder if the government knows what really is good governance, PR and good political communications?
In fact, if the government is serious about repairing it's image it might want to consider releasing the PSM detainees. There is no reason whatsoever to prolong their detention without trial.