TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Press Council is demanding Coordinating Minister for Politics, Legal, and Security Affairs, Wiranto, clarify his remark on a threat to shut down media that helping legal violation.
The council member Ratna Komala said Wiranto should make clear of his statement whether he mentioned press media or social media. “Because Pak Wiranto was talking on the context of social media too,” said Ratna when Tempo reached on Tuesday, May 7.
According to Ratna, if the coordinating minister referred to press media, it will be obviously conflicted with Law No. 40/1999 concerning Press. “That means, press media can be closed, banned and we go back to the era of new order wherein press can be censored and meddled,” she added.
Press freedom is secured by the law. Should censorship against the press is taken, it will be a setback for reformation. Indonesia, Ratna noted, has been liberated from authoritarian regimes that controlled the press.
Ratna further underlined that the government could not intervene in any case related to press media because the mechanism was regulated by law through the council.
“The rule is clear, press council and press community manage itself, regulate itself, and draft regulation needed for the freedom of speech. So once more, Pak Wiranto must make a clarification. [The government] cannot arbitrarily shut down press media,” she remarked.
Previously reported, Wiranto said the government would take stern actions against law violators, including those who spread misleading issue on social media. The minister asserted that the government did not fear of criticism for the sake of maintaining the country’s security.