Malaysia’s former premier Mahathir Mohamad Wednesday emerged as an unlikely champion for the country’s bloggers, arguing they provide a valuable source of news. Mahathir, who in recent months has complained he was being censored by mainstream media, said people were turning to blogs and online news journals because of Malaysia’s tightly controlled media.
“There is no doubt that bloggers have provided us with an alternative source of news. By and large, they have been responsible,” Mahathir said after speaking at a conference on the media and national development. “At the moment, with the atmosphere prevailing in the country, many people are turning to the bloggers for news,” he said.
“That is what the government should learn, if you suppress news then the alternative source will gain credence,” said the former leader, whose daughter Marina has her own blog.