Kota Kinabalu September 15, 2012: Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Dr Yee Moh Chai said Federal Deputy Minister of Information Communications and Culture, Datuk Joseph Salang, should resign from his post for "talking nonsense on the use of satellite dish in Sabah."
"I'm very surprised with the statement made by Salang.
An irresponsible and, in a way, very childish statement that is tantamount to insulting the intelligence of the people in Sabah,"
said Yee, who is also State Resource Development and Information Technology Minister.
Salang had said while here on Thursday that owning a parabolic satellite dish (to enjoy free global TV transmission) is neither banned nor illegal but owners should obtain a licence. He said there are thousands of households with parabolic dishes in Sabah and Sarawak and the proper thing to do was to apply for a licence.
"It is not true that there is a ban on parabolic dishes. It's like you want to keep a dog, you have to obtain a licence. That's is how it works," Salang said. Yee said Salang, as a Deputy Minister in charge of telecommunication, should not talk "nonsense" in the newspapers.
"For the statement he had made, he should apologise to us.
Moreover, how can he say that people can install satellite dishes as they like?
"Unless he can tell us that every single satellite owner in Sarawak had applied for a permit and had been given and, therefore, no action taken, then he should stop talking nonsense and resign from his job," he said.
"Maybe he is only a Deputy Minister and his boss (Rais) had not informed him about what has been going on.
"As for the Minister (Rais), please do not expect us to go see him when he is already in a position to have full knowledge because I have written letters to the PM and copied it to him.
"If he has no full knowledgeÉthat means, he did not even read the letters sent to his Ministry," he said.
Yee explained that he had personally discussed the issue with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and had written two letters to Najib, with copies to Rais. Yee said he did not want to meet Rais on the parabolic dish issue because of past experience. Apart from that, Yee also brought up the issue of monopoly by satellite TV provider, Astro.
"You are allowing Astro to control and monopolise which is not the right thing to do.
It is also not the wishes of the rakyat, especially those in Sabah and Sarawak because of the geographic difficulties that we encounter due to the vastness. Therefore satellite communication and satellite signal form a very important part of communication."
Yee said Najib is aware of the problems and promised to look into it.