Asia

Veteran journalist Wan Hamidi Hamid says he will not be appointed CEO of Malaysian state news agency Bernama

PETALING JAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) – Wan Hamidi Hamid, the former editor-in-chief of Democratic Action Party (DAP) mouthpiece The Rocket, will not be appointed as the new Bernama chief executive officer.

“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,” he said on a Facebook post on Monday (Nov 5).

Wan Hamidi said he would not be answering any queries on the matter for now, and said that this should be directed at the Bernama board, Cabinet Ministers or “those people and racial groups including some media and news portals that hate DAP”.

He explained that he had 30 years of experience in the journalism and communications field.

Wan Hamidi said that he had previously served in Berita Harian, The Star, The Sun, Singapore’s The Straits Times, New Straits Times, 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,” he said.

Wan Hamidi added that although he had not been active in the mainstream media for the past few years, he had continued to write as a columnist for news portals Malaysiakini and The Malaysian Insight, as well as writing and editing books.

“For those who are wondering, 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. We must keep on moving. So there,” he said.

Wan Hamidi was previously speculated to replace outgoing Bernama CEO Zulkefli Salleh.

Former culture and information minister Tan Sri Rais Yatim had said that he was not in favour of Wan Hamidi being appointed to the position, claiming that this would politicise the news agency.

Wan Hamidi worked with The Star from 1994-1995 and 1997-1999.

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