Investigations on the way, Rocky’s notebook & modem confisticated

The pro-tem President of National Alliance of Bloggers Datuk Ahirudin “Rocky” Attan was interviewed by MCMC investigations officer this afternoon at the commission’s headquarters in Cyberjaya.

The Malay Mail has the scoop:

Rocky gives statement to MCMC

SITI NURSURAYA ALI
Wednesday, October 13th, 2010 13:29:00
CYBERJAYA: Datuk Ahirudin Attan, better known as blogger ‘RockyBru’, gave his statement to the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) headquarters here, this morning.

Ahirudin was called by the MCMC to assist investigation following the publication of his blog entry ” Who gets Santa Rais’ RM1 billion handout?” dated October 9.

He arrived at 11.30am to present his statement.

His blog entry had discussed news circulating that the Information, Communications, and Culture Ministry, under its minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim, was about to hand out close to a billion ringgit, via existing telecommunications companies, to three out of nine companies which have been awarded licences to operate wireless broadband and 3G services.

His blog also raised the possibility that a Minister’s son could be involved in the nine or three companies.

The story had carried a link to the original article, which was published on a business blog.

On Sept 27, two blogs namely Taikors and Taikuns (TnT) and bigdogdotcom had alleged that Rais’ son’s telecommunication company was one of nine companies which had benefited from the government grant to develop the broadband connectivity access in Malaysia.

The grant, made via the MCMC, is intended to achieve a 50 per cent broadband household penetration rate. The 2.6GHz spectrum would be made for allocation in January 2013.

Following the publication of the articles on the blogs, Rais lodged a police report on the issue.
This is believed to be the first time a Cabinet minister has lodged a report against a blogger.

Ahirudin said he would cooperate fully with the investigation. He would also hand in his laptop to facilitate investigation, as requested by the MCMC.

“It is sad that Rais had missed the point intended, and as a minister in charge of communications, including bloggers, it is more disheartening that Rais doesn’t understand them,” he told reporters during a short break in between questioning.

Rais had earlier refuted the claims made by the bloggers. He had told The Malay Mail that none of his family members were “even remotely associated with those slanted and ill-intended allegations, and will forthwith assert my rights under the law and report the matter to the MACC so that an investigation could be under way”.

He had also said he would lodge a police report in reference to the “false” news raised by the bloggers.

The issue of “false news” had made headlines recently, in particular the case of The Malay Mail’s entertainment and lifestyle executive editor Irwan Abdul Rahman, who was charged in court over his blog post ‘TNB To Sue WWF Over Earth Hour’, penned under his blogger name, Hassan Skodeng.

Irwan was charged by MCMC under Section 233 (1)(a) of Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 for improper use of network facilities or network service by making, creating, soliciting and initiating transmission of any content that is obscene, indecent, false, menacing or offensive in character with malicious intent.

The charge has been met with ridicule and disdain by the blogging community as well as the legal fraternity, who have labelled it “frivolous”.
****************

 

As part of the procedure which resulted from Dato’ Dr Rais Yatim’s Police report yesterday, his notebook and streamyx modem were confisticated by the Police from his home at 230pm today. The MCMC was conducting the investigations this round as they are the subject matter expert under Sect 256 of the Multimedia Act (1998) and they need to establish certain technical points. The Police is the authority that will have to confiscate all the equipment that will complement the investigations.

Datuk Rocky was pleased to the professionalism and the courtesy of the authorities in this round’s investigations. He is expecting to be investigated by the Police Commercial Crime soon. All investigation findings would be passed to the Attorney General for further action.

Since yesterday evening, bloggers have shown termendous support on the case which now attracted far too much negative attention to the Minister-in-charge Information, Communications and  Culture.

Another Brick in the Wall

Outsyed the Box

House PK

Pahit Manis

Just Read

Thoughts in Tangent

Can You See It

Mesin Taip Buruk

Kickdefella

I Am A Malaysian

3540 Jalan Sudin

and other bloggers. Their solidarity is overwhelming.

It seems that Rais has opened a new front against the bloggers, which include pro-UMNO bloggers. The ‘war’ now is inevitable. The Minister missed the point completely. The posting which irritated him that much was about asking for ‘Transparency’. There is never a good time to be adversarial against the new media practitioners. More over now. The Dewan Rakyat is in session and UMNO general assembly is within a week.

MCMC did issue a statement about the process of the development of 2.6GHz, expected to the completed by 2013. A press statement was issued on the whole process.

Press Statement from MCMC on the allocation of the 2600MHz spectrum

PRESS STATEMENT: ALLOCATION OF 2600MHz SPECTRUM

The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) has started spectrum re-farming exercise and processes as part of its efforts to enhance the utilisation of spectrum and to facilitate the roll out of next generation mobile network services.

The exercise involved the following bands:

i) 700MHz;
ii) 800MHz;
iii) 850MHz;
iv) 900MHz;
v) 1800MHz; and
vi) 2600MHz

Following the exercise, MCMC has decided to give focus to the allocation of the 2600MHz band to pave the way for the early adoption of long-term evolution (LTE) or 4G, and other new technologies and to prepare the service providers for the rollout and implementation of these services to end-users.

After a consultative and deliberation process with various technical groups, it was decided that the assignment of 2600MHz to be given to nine (9) companies who are license holders that meet the set requirements.

The allocation of the assignment is done in accordance to the provisions of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 (CMA).

The companies include incumbents (existing 3G and WiMAX players) and a new entrant: They are:

i) Celcom Axiata Berhad;
ii) Maxis Broadband Sdn Bhd;
iii) DiGi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd;
iv) U-Mobile Sdn Bhd;
v) Asiaspace Sdn Bhd;
vi) Packet One Networks (M) Sdn Bhd;
vii) RedTone Marketing Sdn Bhd;
viii) YTL Communications Sdn Bhd; and
ix) Puncak Semangat Sdn Bhd.

The committee had identified these companies as having the ability to promote innovation and to provide seamless continuity of existing services using new technologies. MCMC also recognizes the contributions made by the wireless service providers towards the fulfilling the objectives of the National Broadband Initiatives.

The companies are required to pay fees in order to use the spectrum band and will NOTreceive grants of any kind from MCMC or the Universal Service Provision (USP) Fund for the utilization of the spectrum. The USP Fund is for the development and deployment of communications facilities for rural development.

MCMC has issued letters to the license holders on the allocation of the 2600MHz spectrum band for rolling out wireless broadband service using 4G technology by 1 January 2013. The assignment of the 2600MHz spectrum band will be based on the merit of the Detailed Business Plans (DBP) to be submitted by the license holders to meet the requirements of the allocation.

The assignment of the spectrum band is by way of apparatus assignment and MCMC has the right to withdraw the assigned spectrum at any time if companies fail to comply with the set terms and conditions.

Among the key requirements in the assignment of spectrum are roll out targets and their roles as promoter and developer of applications and contents that will help build a ubiquitous Malaysia lifestyle by 2020.

************

Read also Tony Yew’s take on this controversy.

Its never good to get wiser after the event. Rais and who ever is advising him should know that. That is not something someone who has “Been in politics for 40 years” should do.

*Updated 900pm

Supremo bloggo-journo Rocky said BigDog is next in the investigations. The authorities should know where to find him. His kennel is in North Petaling Jaya.

 

 

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Published in: on October 13, 2010 at 19:11  Comments (4)