Asia Centre’s Interviews 2023
In the latest episode of Pressing Matters on BFM Radio, Asia Centre’s Dr James Gomez conversed with Philip See. They delved into the topic of how Malaysia’s youth can embody both national and global citizenship. This discussion gained significance in light of the recent incorporation of social causes, like the Solidarity with Palestine week, into Malaysian public education system. Dr Gomez provided his insights and opinions on whether these initiatives genuinely contribute to instilling the principles of global citizenship in the new generation.
On 3 November 2023, Dr James Gomez, from the Asia Centre, appeared on Bernama TV’s “the Nation”, alongside Dr Syarifah Fatimah Alzahrah Al-Attas from IIUM, with Gerald Ratnam as the host. During the program, Dr. Gomez discussed the noteworthy subjects that gained attention in Malaysia during the week of 30 October 2023. These subjects encompassed matters such as support for Palestine, integrating civic education into schools, employment issues, children’s rights and care economy.
On 27 June 2023, Asia Centre’s Regional Director Dr James Gomez discusses on ABC News the upcoming challenges predicted with the shift in Thailand’s political leadership and how it will impact the nation’s relationship with Myanmar, the Burmese military and its displaced people in Thailand.
On 8th May 2023, Asia Centre’s Regional Director Dr. James Gomez was interviewed by BFM Radio for its Morning Run programme on the upcoming Thailand Elections. Dr Gomez said the election would result in no clear winner resulting in coalition building. He said as per Asia Centre’s report “State-Sponsored Online Disinformation: Impact on Electoral Integrity in Thailand”, that disinformation will be used to shape the outcomes of the 14 May elections and thereafter.
In Malaysia, the 3 “R”s — race, religion, and royalty — are considered politically sensitive topics, and despite constitutional guarantees of freedom of speech, the state has passed laws that restrict their discussion, both online and off. While these curbs have the potential to stifle critical discussion and maintain existing power structures, they’ve had little effect on subduing ultra-nationalist voices, resulting in an increase in hate speech and online harassment. What’s behind the taboos on the 3 Rs? How are the laws applied? And what is the effect on the health of Malaysian democracy and society? Southeast Asia political scientist Dr James Gomez and Malaysia-based social commentator Dina Zaman explore the nuances of Malaysian political discourse with presenter Ali Moore.
Journalists are facing an increasingly hostile environment in Cambodia driven by stricter regulations. Even though international aid is a key funding source to keep the remaining independent media houses alive, it is often misguided and even supports a more and more authoritarian system.
Dr. James Gomez, Regional Director of Asia Centre, was interviewed in a podcast “How has Online Discourse Shaped Conversation on Sensitive Topics in Malaysia?” by BFM Radio on 30 January 2023. Reflecting upon Asia Centre’s recent report “Internet Freedoms in Malaysia: Regulating Online Discourse on Race, Religion, and Royalty”, Dr Gomez outlined the impacts of the different 3R narratives that stand to shape the politics of the country post-GE15, and how it is likely to affect internet freedoms in Malaysia.