Archive | June, 2009

On Being A Watchdog : Open Call to Omni Hospitals

3 Jun

Just recently, another thing happened which gave me yet another reason of why it is not fun to live in this supposedly-lawful country. On May 13, 2009, Prita Mulyasari was detained in jail following a defamation suit by a hospital chain in this country, Omni Hospitals. This was done following Ms. Mulyasari’s open letter to several media about the hospital’s allegedly mistreatment of her in August 2008.

Firstly, as stated by this blog, her rights to state her opinion were secured in Law No. 8, Year 1999 on Consumer Rights. This is crucial to understand that whatever complaints and grievances a consumer might have against a business, he / she should be free to express them. Similarly, a proper channel for the said business to respond, will need to take the form of an open response via acceptable media.

Secondly, the role of media in watchdog journalism has long been recognized in civilization. When I mention media, this includes whatever content it might have. And yes, that includes a published complaint of a reader too. The press, – together with the citizen, should perform as the watchdog here. For a country without a watchdog to watch its public personalities and institutions will be tyrannical or even chaotic. I shudder at the thought of such society. Even the self-righteous US ex-president, George W. Bush understands this when Dan Rather did an investigative segment which cast Bush’s military record in an unfavorable light.

Based on those things I mentioned, here’s my open call to Omni Hospitals in Indonesia :

I openly am calling you a dangerous party to human right. You inflicted, – and keep on inflicting, a grievous and perfidious injury to human character and dignity by pursuing your shameless and base defamation suit against Prita Mulyani. If you consider this a defamation too, – as you showed in your treatment of your dissatisfied customers -, then so be it. I am consciously raising the stakes too. You are what you are, and I am calling you a villainous institution to your face. You will continue to be this as long as you insist on proceeding with your suit against her. I openly also daring you to pursue this against me, along with the necessary physical detainment that you seem to favor.

Friends, you are a witness to this. Whatever they did, said, – or will do and say are brought out in the open. And like we did in Depdiknas issue back then, I will continue to raise hell until this insanity is finished and safely sealed in a box.

( Pic was taken from this site )