FULL REPORT KUALA LUMPUR: PKR's party organ Suara Keadilan may face physical shutdown if it continues to defy the Home Ministry's decision to discontinue its publication's permit.
"Yes, it is possible," said Minister Hishammuddin Hussein when asked by reporters at Parliament House here if a physical shutdown was in his ministry's pipeline in light of Suara Keadilan's defiance.
Hishammuddin, however, said he is still waiting for legal advice from his men in the ministry for the next course of action.
"The (legal) division will advise me. We must study the next course of action and the jurisdiction of the ministry in the context of legal action.”
Suara Keadilan's permit, which expired on June 30, was not renewed following an article that claimed that the Federal Land Development Authority (Felda) was bankrupt.
The ministry said it did not receive "satisfactory" replies to the showcause letter demanding the organ explain its article.
Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister Department Ahmad Maslan denied the allegation, saying that while Felda's cash reserve has dropped, its net assets worth has multiplied.
While Felda has threatened PKR with a RM200 million suit, its leaders have vehemently maintained the veracity of their article and Suara Keadilan said it will continue to publish its newspaper.
Hishammuddin said this reflected the party's arrogance and its action is against the law.
He also shrugged off criticism of partiality levelled against his ministry, insisting that it has been fair to all parties regardless of their ideological differences.
"In this case, regardless of whether it's Suara Keadilan or Suara Perkasa or other media, they must follow the existing rules and regulations.
"In the case of Suara Keadilan, its licence has already expired... but it's being arrogant by wanting to continue with its publication.
"This is a direct violation of the laws," said Hishammuddin.
Home Ministry's Publication Control and Quranic Text Division Zaitun Ab Samad said earlier today that Suara Keadilan may face stern legal action if it continues with its publication.
The statement was made in response to PKR chief strategist Chua Tian Chang's contention that the organ had yet to receive any updates on its permit renewal application.