KUALA LUMPUR: The mass media plays an important role and is responsible for instilling unity and upholding lasting peace in any country, said Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
The prime minister said the importance of mass media in today’s socio, economic and cultural development of a nation, cannot be denied and should be given due recognition.
“This role is clearly in line with the principles enshrined in the Rukun Negara, which is the country’s national philosophy and a guide to the building of this great nation, and as a way of life for all citizens, without any distinction, regardless of creed or colour.
”It is not too far fetched if I say that the mass media has been the catalyst for racial harmony and unity in ensuring the success and stability of this beloved country of ours, ” he said.
Muhyiddin said this in his speech when launching the New Straits Times’ exclusive photo exhibition, which chronicles the English newspaper’s involvement in the country’s nation-building process since 1845, here last night.
Muhyiddin also believes the presence of mainstream media could act as a reference point for general society to evaluate on their own the truthfulness of news that is published or made viral on social media, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“At this juncture, I would like to record my utmost appreciation to all media personnel who have been doing daunting tasks despite the risks they faced to be on the frontlines to deliver the latest and accurate updates to all Malaysians.
“We are not just dealing with the Covid-19 threat which cannot be detected nor seen with the naked eye, (and) this situation is made worse with the spread of fake news by some irresponsible quarters,” he said.
During the visit, Muhyiddin took his time to visit the photo exhibition themed ‘Traversing 175’, that highlights Malaysia’s achievements since the early 19th century, featuring a collection of over 400 rare and nostalgic images as well as the newspaper’s front cover editions on critical dates throughout the country’s history.
The Traversing 175 exhibition is on display at Galeri Prima in Balai Berita, Bangsar until Aug 10 with the gallery open to the public on weekdays from 10am to 6pm.
Muhyiddin also launched KLIK, the New Straits Times Press’ latest news archiving portal and service offering Malaysia’s oldest and most comprehensive collection of images and news articles owned and published by the company since the first NST edition in 1845. - Bernama