PETALING JAYA: The Home Ministry has continued to confiscate copies of Suara Keadilan despite the lifting of a suspension order on the Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) newspaper.
The latest edition of Suara Keadilan (21-28 April) was reportedly seized by ministry officials from several vendors in Selayang, Gombak and on Jalan Masjid India this morning.
In a press statement issued today, Suara Keadilan‘s editorial department claimed similar seizures of the newspaper have taken place in other areas around the country.
Officers from the Enforcement Unit of Publications and Al-Quran Texts Division in the Home Ministry did not provide any specific reason for the seizures except that Suara Keadilan‘s publication had violated the Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984 (PPPA).
The statement also claimed several readers had contacted Suara Keadilan to report that vendors in Rawang and Taman Melawati are being forced to sell the paper in secret because of the threat of seizures.
The confiscation of the party organ comes in the wake of the lifting of a three-month suspension order on Suara Keadilan and PAS newsletter Harakah by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak immediately after taking office on 3 April.
Both party papers had been suspended on 23 March by the Home Ministry for violating the conditions of their publishing permits.
Suara Keadilan‘s editorial department, in the statement, urged the Home Ministry to stop confiscating the party mouthpiece and harassing its distributors as it is licensed and published by a registered party.
They also asked the ministry to avoid abusing the PPPA to oppress an opposition party’s publication.
Furthermore, they called on Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein to take steps to ensure that the his ministry and the Enforcement Unit of the Publications and Al-Quran Texts Division take heed of the prime minister‘s call for a “vibrant, free and informed media”.