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Monthly Archives: December 2020

Sarawak staying focused on developed status by 2030 despite COVID-19, says Uggah

The Sarawak government’s commitment to bring the state to developed status by 2030 has not swayed despite having to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, said Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas.

He said although the pandemic had caused 2020 to become an unprecedented year and posed a huge challenge for Sarawak, the state government could still execute people-centric development plans to uplift their living standard.

“The government is preparing Sarawak to pursue economic transformation more vigorously, navigate a changing external strategic landscape globally while deepening its social component,” he said in his 2021 New Year message today.

Uggah, who is also state Second Finance Minister and Modernisation of Agriculture, Native Land and Regional Development Minister, said the 2021 State Budget tabled in November was a testament to the strong commitment to expedite rural development, stimulate economic growth and improve the people’s livelihood.

Uggah, who is also the Sarawak State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) chairman, said Sarawak had managed to flatten the COVID-19 curve by adopting the full containment policy of “Trace, Test, Quarantine and Isolate”.

He thanked the SDMC members and frontliners for being selfless in handling the pandemic, as well as the public for being cooperative and complying with the health Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), which contributed to the success.

“For as long as the vaccine is not available, the entire world will have to live with COVID-19. Therefore, I would like to urge everyone to remain vigilant, stay healthy, stay safe and adhere to the SOPs,” he said.

In welcoming the new year, he also called on everyone to take a step forward daringly and with determination together in unity to bring Sarawak out of the pandemic crisis, while staying focused on the development goals that had been set.

“I am confident Sarawak will be able to achieve its goals toward peace, stability and prosperity. Let us remain resilient to the great challenges ahead and continue to make the new norms our norms now,” he added.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Learn from 2020’s challenges, step into 2021 with greater resolve – PM Muhyiddin

— Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin today called on the people to learn from the challenges and trials of 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and urged them to step into 2021 with renewed spirit and determination.

“For the new year 2021, I would like to call on all everyone to continue to strengthen our resolve, commitment and our efforts to jointly curb the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said in his 2021 New Year message aired on television channels tonight.

Muhyiddin went on to share his deep concern for the trials and tribulations faced by the people during the COVID-19 pandemic, including those who lost their jobs and had to tighten their belts just so to ensure there is food on the table for the family as well as in enduring other forms of hardship.

He said the government was working hard to ensure the people were safe from the threat of the deadly virus.

“Nevertheless, we ourselves need to be responsible and vigilant because this virus is already in the community around us. God willing, armed with the experience we faced throughout 2020, we can all ensure that the pandemic situation continues to be under control,” he said.

The prime minister also assured Malaysians that the government will put the interests of the people above other matters, adding that their welfare is the top priority of the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government.

“In facing the various challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the PN government leadership has taken into account all aspects, including the people’s welfare in our economic, health, education and social sector plans,” he said.

He said this policy is not merely a slogan, but encompasses the entire formation and mindset of the PN government and its policies, up to the stage of implementation and delivery.

The prime minister also expressed his appreciation to Malaysians who have been united in facing the challenges of the pandemic with great determination.

“Despite being faced with obstacles one after another throughout 2020, Malaysians have shown a positive attitude and strong resilience, which is something to be really proud of. Thank you, Malaysians,” Muhyiddin said.

While reminding the people to continue to comply with the standard operating procedures set, and not be complacent with the flexibility given, Muhyiddin hopes 2021 will open a new chapter for Malaysians, especially in terms of public health, socio-economy, racial unity and national integration.

“2020 has been a very difficult and challenging year, but I believe as human beings and the people of this blessed land of Malaysia, there are still many blessings that we can be grateful for.

“Let us all mobilise the strength and tenacity shown throughout 2020, to move into 2021 with stronger spirit,” Muhyiddin said.

The PN government, he added, will continue to uphold Islamic principles by fulfilling the demands of the Maqasid Syariah which protects religion, life, intellect, lineage and property without denying the rights of other religions in a situation where the country is facing the COVID-19 pandemic.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Marine Police arrest man, seize cigarettes worth RM2.5 million

— The Region Three Marine Police Force detained a man and seized 17,000 cartons of smuggled cigarettes and a lorry, with an estimated combined worth of RM2.5 million in Kampung Tepoh at Batu Rakit near Kuala Nerus today.

Its deputy commander Supt Mohd Razlin Abdul Manaf said the man, aged 30, was arrested at around 8.15 am at the roadside of Kampung Tepoh by an officer and eight personnel.

“The officer and personnel were out on patrol following a targetted lorry…When the suspect realised the presence of police, he accelerated in defiance of police orders to stop the vehicle.

“A 30-minute chase then ensued between the suspect and the police and when the suspect neared a traffic light intersection at Kampung Tepoh, he stopped the lorry at the side of the road and ran away, but he was apprehended,” he told a media conference here today.

An inspection of the lorry revealed 340 boxes filled with 17,000 cartons of John brand cigarettes, he added.

“The police believe that a syndicate that has been operating for a year or two was behind the smuggling and that the cigarettes were destined for sale around Kuala Terengganu.

“We are also looking for the suspect’s associates,” he said, adding that the investigation would be conducted under the Customs Act 1967.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Govt ready to consider strategic fiscal injection if situation warrants it — PM

The government is ready to consider a strategic fiscal injection if the current economic situation warrants it, like the previous economic stimulus packages, said Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

The Prime Minister said strengthening the people’s caring economy and driving the country’s economic growth after COVID-19 was one of the government’s five integrated strategies laid out for next year.

“The government will help as much as possible to ease the burden of the rakyat, eradicate poverty and improve their well-being.

“When the rakyat’s economy is strong, it will be easier for us to drive the country’s economic growth after COVID-19.

“We cannot be complacent and take the success that we have achieved today for granted,” he said when delivering the new year message for 2021 which was broadcast live tonight.

Muhyiddin said the government had taken an inclusive approach in addressing the issue of cost of living, the people’s livelihoods, as well as eradicating poverty, especially during COVID-19 by introducing four economic stimulus packages worth RM305 billion.

These include various measures to preserve the well-being of the people, warrant business sustainability and acceleration, as well as ensure that the economy is on track for recovery, he said.

On other integrated strategies, Muhyiddin said the government would ensure that the country’s political stability, including good governance, become the basis for a sustainable economic recovery.

The government will also ensure that the country’s sovereignty is protected and Malaysia’s position on the international stage is intensified, he said.

“I believe that political stability and good governance will be able to create a conducive investment ecosystem to ensure that Malaysia remains a major investment destination in the Southeast Asian region and hence, accelerate the country’s economic recovery process,” he said.

The Prime Minister said besides strengthening ties with neighbours in the ASEAN region, the government will continue to strengthen diplomatic and economic ties with countries that share similar aspirations, through existing and future platforms.

Malaysia’s relations with foreign countries in terms of diplomacy, security and economy will always be based on strategic interests for the long term, he said.

He said another priority earmarked for 2021 was that the government would improve the level of public health through the procurement of the COVID-19 vaccine supply and the launch of the vaccination programme nationwide.

The government will also ensure that relations between races and religions are strengthened in forming a united society as a bulwark against any threats.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Dr Rohaizat Yon ends duties as Health Deputy DG

— After more than four months of returning from his retirement, Datuk Dr Rohaizat Yon finally ended his duties as Health deputy director-general (Medical) today.

The matter was announced by Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah via his official Facebook account.

“We and the Malaysian people appreciate his countless services and sacrifices in leading the MOH Medical Programme all this while, working tirelessly regardless of time and day, Datuk Dr Rohaizat always ready to discharging his duties and responsibilities entrusted upon him.

“Hopefully, your noble services and contributions will receive divine blessings and rewards in this world and the hereafter, God willing,” he said.

Dr Noor Hisham also dedicated a ‘pantun’ to Dr Rohaizat:

Di atas batu hinggapnya murai,

Berlagu kicauan terasa tenang,

Tibalah waktu melabuhkan tirai,

Baktimu Tuan dikenang-kenang.

Dr Rohaizat, regarded as one of the ministry’s war generals in the fight against COVID-19, had retired on June 10 after 35 years and 10 days in service. He returned to serve the ministry from Aug 6 until today.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Malaysia ends 2020 with record high 2,525 new cases, eight deaths – Health DG

Malaysia will end 2020 on a jarring note after setting a new record-high of COVID-19 infections since the pandemic began in January with 2,525 new cases reported today.

Adding to the dismay was the announcement of eight more fatalities, taking the country’s COVID-19 death toll to 471 people.

With this latest development, Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said Malaysia’s COVID-19 infection tally was now at 113, 010 cases, 23,598 of which are active ones.

“Selangor reported the highest with 1,205 cases, of which 995 were from clusters and COVID-19 close contact screening actively conducted in the field.

“This is followed by Sabah with 299 cases and Melaka with 239,” he said in a statement here today.

Dr Noor Hisham, however, said a total of 1,481 recovered cases were recorded today, bringing the total number of recoveries so far to 88,941 cases.

To date, there are 131 cases being treated at the intensive care unit, 60 of them intubated, Dr Noor Hisham said.

He said Kuala Lumpur recorded 222 cases, Johor (194), Penang (92), Negeri Sembilan (78) Labuan (63) Kelantan (37), Perak (33), Kedah (24), Terengganu (17), Pahang (15), Putrajaya (5) and Sarawak with two cases.

The deaths involved five men and three women, all Malaysians, aged between 39 and 70, in Johor, Selangor, Kelantan, Negeri Sembilan and Kedah.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

MCMC advises organisations to remain vigilant against cyber attacks

The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) has advised organisations, as well as system and website administrators in Malaysia to remain vigilant against cyber attacks.

The advice came after the National Cyber Security Agency (NACSA) under the National Security Council (MKN) notified of cyber security threats and websites of Malaysian organisations being hacked.

“If any suspicious attack activity is detected, organisations as well as system and website administrators are urged to submit their reports and information to NACSA via the link (https://www.nacsa.gov.my/incident_report.php) for follow-up action,” the MCMC said in a statement here today.

The agency also advised system and website administrators to take measures to enhance and update the security protection of existing ICT assets, especially those dealing with customers and the public.

It was also advised that suspicious access to ICT assets including servers, devices, and organisational networks should be monitored constantly.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency