Union slams DAP leaders for calling journalists 'prostitutes'

PETALING JAYA - The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) has hit out at DAP election publicity chief Hew Kuan Yau for referring to journalists as "prostitutes".

NUJ general-secretary V. Anbalagan said the union was also appalled by DAP disciplinary committee chairman Tan Kok Wai's stand, giving tacit support that "Hew was stating a fact".

"Hew's statement has tarnished the image of journalists," he said in a press release yesterday.

"This is unfair as he has cast aspersions on journalists, a special category of people, to continue serving and raising issues of public interest.

"We demand that the stand taken by the DAP leadership be supported with evidence. Anything short of this is baseless and unfounded allegations against journalists and the profession," he added.

On Feb 6, Hew had posted on his Facebook: "Our society has recently slammed some teenagers for not having self-respect by prostituting themselves for their material needs. Have we ever thought that there are reporters who have no self-respect and 'prostitute' themselves to Barisan Nasional for the same reason?"

When Hew's remarks became public, Sin Chew Daily contacted Tan, who said no action would be taken against Hew as he was merely being truthful.

Tan even went on to accuse several reporters in smaller towns of receiving "benefits" from local politicians.

On Friday, Hew posted on Facebook: "I apologise for causing controversy by telling the truth."