KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 5 – Former editor-in-chief of DAP mouthpiece The Rocket, Wan Hamidi Hamid has confirmed he would not be appointed as national news agency Bernama chief executive officer.
In a rather caustic Facebook posting today, Wan Hamidi suggested that he was chucked out as a prime candidate for the post following attacks by several quarters, despite there being efforts to convince him to accept the job.
“After being a target of lies, unfair condemnations and personal attacks for quite some time, I have been informed that I would not be appointed as the Bernama CEO. This is despite being initially offered, persuaded and convinced to accept this job at the national news agency.
“My apologies but I won’t be replying to any queries. So please don’t waste your time trying to message me or call me about this. Now is not the time, sorry.”
Wan Hamidi also implied that those with propaganda against DAP, several media and racial groups might be responsible behind the short-lived offer for the post.
“If you really want to know, perhaps you should you ask the Bernama Board or the Cabinet Minister(s), or those people and racial groups, including some media and news portals that hate DAP. Perhaps they know more.
“For those who didn’t know me (including those who had vilified me) let me share with you this info – I have 30 years’ experience in journalism and communications. I have worked with Berita Harian, The Star, The Sun, Straits Times Singapore, New Straits Times, and The Malaysian Insider, as well as DAP’s Rocket Publications.
“I also had a stint with the Australian High Commission in Kuala Lumpur as its media relations advisor. The last position I held was Deputy Director for Research for Social Advancement (REFSA), a progressive think tank.”
Wan Hamidi pointed out that he was a firm believer in media freedom.
“I actually believe in free press and freedom of expression, although we know that in the Malaysian context, it’s easier said than done. But we must never give up.
“Despite not being active in the mainstream media in recent years, I continue to write as columnist for news portals Malaysiakini and The Malaysian Insight. I have also written and edited some books.”
Wan Hamidi was previously tipped to replace outgoing Bernama CEO Datuk Zulkefli Salleh.
Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo was reported to have said that Zulkefli’s successor would be announced in early October.
However, in another report, former socio-cultural adviser to the government Tan Sri Dr Rais Yatim, who is currently Negri Sembilan Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia head, was quoted as saying that Wan Hamidi’s appointment would “politicise” the news agency. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd