Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has warned he will drop the hammer without warning on those who “spin” stories.
"This is not a warning. I am taking action without warning. You will have to pay a very expensive price.
“Don’t ever spin. This is Zahid Hamidi, okay?” Zahid, who is also Home Minister is reported by The Star as saying.
"Not under my leadership; I am telling you this. Don’t expect me to warn, expect me to take action,” The Star quoted him saying at the Bayan Baru Umno annual general meeting in Penang yesterday.
Zahid said news reports must be ethical and based on facts.
"You have to respect ethics. You write based on facts; don’t interpret and don’t ever spin,” he said.
Zahid has issued several stern warnings to the media before.
In 2013, he manhandled a Malaysiakini reporter, telling the journalist and the news portal's editors not to "spin" his words.
Also that year, he threatened to shut down newspapers that reported him admitting that there is a shoot-to-kill policy.
In his speech yesterday, Zahid stressed that he would give all Malaysians equal treatment regardless, of race or religion.
"I am a fundamentalist in Islam. I am a Malay but I’ll never forget non-Muslims and other races. I am a minister for all Malaysians; a deputy prime minister for all Malaysians.
“But I will never compromise my principles for Islam and Malays.
“I have to be fair to the rest, but do not question my stand,” he added.