Maldives Media Council (MMC) and Maldives Journalist Association (MJA) have expressed concerns following the Parliament-led probe into the report published by local media ‘Mihaaru’ regarding Speaker Nasheed’s residential security.
MMC stated in its press release that the freedom within journalism is a right provided by the Constitution of Maldives and that no authority can force anyone to reveal their informant behind a certain information, amid calls from MDP and parliamentary members to reveal the anonymous source behind the Mihaaru report.
Moreover, an investigation like this would take the media a step back in the past and dampen any progress the media has made up to now. This is a threat to investigative journalism and that condemns any such investigation which goes against the spirit of journalism.
Further, MMC stated that they have contacted the Chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security and MP of Addu North Consistency Mohamed Aslam and he has confirmed that neither the journalist or the anonymous source behind the report will be investigated.
MJA also expressed similar sentiments, stating that such an investigation would violate the right to freedom of journalism and that they highly condemn any actions which may interfere with the right of news media. Moreover, they also expressed concerns regarding the job security of the journalist and the anonymous source.
MMC is set to investigate whether the report breaches any guidelines. MMC also advised all media to be extra cautious when reporting topics relating to National Security.