Daily Archives: September 12, 2021

Nearly 100 per cent of policemen fully vaccinated against COVID-19

YAN, Sept 12 — Almost 100 per cent of officers and members of the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, said Deputy Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Mazlan Lazim.

To date, he said only a small number of PDRM personnel had not received the vaccine shots due to health factors and some still waiting for an appointment date.

“Some personnel don’t want the vaccine because they have allergies or health problems with reports from doctors…no members or officers refuse the vaccine for no reason,” he told a press conference after handing over the wakalah zakat to 16 PDRM personnel including pensioners who were affected by last month’s floods here today.

Each of them received RM1,000 cash and food aid worth RM100.

Meanwhile, Mazlan said PDRM would work with the state Islamic religious department in an effort to eradicate worship and superstitious activities that were detected in the Gunung Jerai area.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Rumah Prihatin ready to be PPV for adolescents – Annuar Musa

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 12 — ‘Rumah Prihatin’ set up at the Grand Seasons Hotel here is ready to be used as a vaccination centre (PPV) for adolescents if the need arises, says Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa.

He said this would help the Health Ministry (MOH) to double or speed up the vaccination programme for teenagers.

“In Kuala Lumpur, most (residents) have received vaccinations, so the capacity of the MOH-operated PPVs would be more than adequate.

“However, if there is a need from the MOH to expedite vaccination for teenagers, we would be ready,” he told reporters after the programme to hand over food assistance to the needy and frontliners at Rumah Prihatin today.

Rumah Prihatin is the first welfare hotel charity centre in Malaysia, set up to help the government coordinate the distribution of aid and welfare services more effectively following the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the meantime, Annuar said his ministry also planned to provide digital economy training services at Rumah Prihatin to the low-income group and poor children living around the area.

“We propose to create a digital economy centre in collaboration with the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation and the Malaysian Multimedia Communications Commission to provide training to children of poor families to study e-commerce,” he said.

On the advance payments to creative arts production companies under the ministry, Annuar said applications for the purpose were now open.

“Those who are involved in filming and producing content for the use of television and radio stations usually have to complete the project before getting payment.

“But taking into account the financial complexities of the creative industry, we have decided to allow them to apply for an advance of up to a maximum of one-fourth of the contract price or 25 per cent of the contract value, in order to provide a ‘jump-start’ to those who are financially burdened due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” he added.

Under today’s programme, about 500 individuals comprising frontliners involved in the management of the bodies of COVID-19 patients, as well as petty traders and the needy around the capital received food aid donations and meal coupons.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

About 3,500 hectares of forest reserves in Kedah illegally cleared – JPNK

SIK, Sept 12 — About 3,500 hectares of forest reserves in Kedah were detected to have been illegally cleared from 2011 until now, said Kedah Forestry Department (JPNK) director Muhamad Abdullah.

He said the illegal land exploration by irresponsible parties was mostly for agricultural purposes such as to plant oil palm, durian and rubber trees besides opening new settlements.

“For newly explored areas, we will conduct demolition and reforestation efforts while for areas that have been explored for a long time and produce yields, we will seek directives from the state government for further action.

“To date, we have detained 20 men in connection with several forest encroachment cases and the investigation papers are being prepared before we hand them over to the deputy public prosecutor.”

He said this to reporters after attending the tree plantation programme in conjunction with the 100 Million Tree-Planting Campaign 2021-2025 at Compartment 4 of the Bukit Enggang Forest Reserve here today.

Muhamad said illegal land encroachment activities in forest reserves could result in the destruction of biodiversity in the affected areas as well as the loss of forest products to the state government.

On the 100 Million Tree-Planting Campaign, he said JPNK aimed to plant 2.75 million trees in areas that have been identified in the state, with 550,000 trees to be planted annually until 2025.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Video of Malaysian ambassador to Cambodia performing silat wows netizens

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 12 — Underneath the formal attire and performing his duties as the country’s top diplomat to Cambodia, who would have thought that Malaysia’s ambassador to that country, Eldeen Husaini Mohd Hashim is an accomplished silat exponent

His hidden talent only surfaced after a video of him performing a silat dance performance during the National Day celebrations at the embassy in Phnom Penh recently became viral on the social media which caught the attention of netizens and won praises as well.

The video of Eldeen Husaini wearing the traditional baju Melayu in black together with a sampin and tengkolok (a headgear) while performing the silat to date has garnered more than 200,000 views.

A netizen, Johanda Jarili wrote “This is good, the Malays will not wither in the world. It would be nice if the Malay silat is performed at official events”.

Another netizen, Hamran Sarif also commented, “This is what we want. We are great. No matter where you go, culture and traditions will follow”.

When contacted, Eldeen Husaini said the performance was merely to create a difference when celebrating the National Day apart from showcasing the Malay culture. It has been a while since it was performed among the Malays especially those living overseas.

“Each year, it is a tradition to celebrate the National Day starting with the raising of the Malaysian flag, singing the Negaraku song, speeches, prayers and meals. But this time, I want to do something different so that guests can feel the excitement of the celebrations.

“It is even more relevant now. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, big events involving the assembly of people are no longer allowed because it is a risk to health,” he said adding that the National Day celebrations was done according the standard operating procedure (SOP) to prevent the spread of COVID-19 with the number of guests limited to just 50 people.

Eldeen Husaini said he was appointed ambassador to Cambodia since April 1 2019. Initially, even his staff did not know he was a good silat exponent until the National Day rehearsal was carried out.

“During the rehearsal, after singing the Negaraku, the raising of Jalur Gemilang should follow but I made a request to the organiser play the “gendang silat” and I began my silat movements. There were those who asked whether the ambassador himself should perform. It has never been done before but I said I wanted to surprise everybody and I asked them to keep it a secret.

“On the actual day, I again reminded the master of ceremony to just mention a special performance from an invited guest. All those who attended began guessing who that person was.

“When my staff came to hand over the tengkolok to me, I began to perform the silat dance and that surprised the guests. Only then did they realised that the ambassador was performing the silat himself. The situation became a lot more fun, especially for those watching it for the first time,” he said.

Born in Kampung Baru, he admitted that he was quite nervous initially because he was worried that the ‘gimmick’ he planned might not work because its has been a while since he performed the silat. In fact, he had never performed in public except for his family members.

“I started learning Silat Gayung Fatani at the age of 14 until I became a trainer at the age of 19. After that, I stopped to further my studies overseas. During that time, I trained by myself so that I don’t forget the moves.

“There are those who asked if I had trained long and hard for the National Day performance but I said no. I just rehearse. I believe other silat exponents would understand especially when you have trained long enough, the art becomes part of you. So when the silat song is played, you can do it,” he said.

The former St John Secondary School student said after doing the performance, he received feedback from Cambodians and foreign guests who said that they were interested in silat and wanted to learn the moves.

“Most of them had never seen silat and they thought silat was just like other traditional dances, but I told them silat is a form of Malay art of self-defence and the traditional Malay dance is a just branch which is the basis to silat movements,” said Eldeen Husaini who plans to invite silat associations in Malaysia to perform and expose the Malay art in Cambodia in the future.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

From part-time barista to 2D cafe owner

TUMPAT, Sept 12 — Five years ago, while working as a part-time barista at a branch of a popular coffee house chain in Kuala Lumpur, Ismail Mohamad had harboured dreams of venturing into the food and beverage business.

Today, Ismail, 24, is the proud owner of Movilion Coffee House (Movilion) and he operates two unique concept stores, one in Pasir Pekan, here, and another in Kota Bharu, which make for impressive Instagram photos.

“The trend among young people nowadays is to take selfies and share their photographs on social media and this had set me thinking about doing something different, because for the youngsters these days, it is the experience or unique memories that they are after.

“I was also inspired by the two-dimensional world inspired cafes which I had visited when I had the opportunity to travel to several foreign countries during my stint with a local airline company before this,” he told Bernama.

What is unique about Movilion, is at its dining section, the walls and floor are painted with white and black two-dimensional (2D) drawings which come to life, including that of a lady enjoying a drink in the restaurant.

“The first time I travelled to Korea in 2018, I visited Incheon and Seoul and I was impressed by a cafe with 2D interiors with decorative elements drawn onto the walls which created a strange yet enchanting optical illusion.

“That was where I got the idea of opening a coffee shop with 2D effect interiors in Kelantan which is definitely going to be different from the others that we have here,” he said.

Apart from serving an assortment of coffee, Movilion also has an extensive selection of western food including various types of pasta dishes and grilled chicken as well as desserts such as cheesecake-flavoured ice cream and its best-seller waffle with ice cream, all of which are Ismail’s very own recipes.

Ismail said he started to venture into the business after losing his job as a customer service staff of a local airline at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I was with the company for almost four years and was really passionate about my job, but it all ended after I was laid off in January. So, I decided to return home and stay with my parents in Bachok.

“I started the business (Movilion) in early February using my own savings and assisted by my two sisters, Nurul Izzah, 32, and Fauzah, 29, who are also my business partners and advisors of the company,” he said.

Ismail admitted that initially, the response was lukewarm following the implementation of the Movement Control Order during which time, eateries were not allowed to operate normally to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

However, with strong determination, Ismail said he continued to promote Movilion through social media and engaged e-hailing services to boost sales and the hard work slowly paid off when his cafe became the talk of the town since last June.

Ismail, the fifth of six siblings said he could now rake in RM50,000 to RM70,000 a month and his sales revenue had been increasing after the government’s decision to allow dine-ins in restaurants and eateries.

Ismail, who holds a Diploma in Aviation Management from Cybernatics College in Kuala Lumpur said, for the moment, he wants to focus on strengthening the two existing Movilion branches before expanding his business to other districts.

“Insya-Allah, I will open another branch soon, while at the same time help provide employment opportunities for local youths,” said Ismail who currently has eight workers.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Schools, except for Phase One states, to reopen Oct 3 – Radzi

PUTRAJAYA, Sept 12 — Schools will reopen in stages from Oct 3 according to the phases of states under the National Recovery Plan (PPN), Education Minister Datuk Seri Dr Radzi Jidin said.

In a media conference to announce the reopening of schools today, Radzi, who is also a senior minister, said the 2021 schooling session will be extended to March 2022 so that intervention among weak students can be carried out on the grounds that they have not attended classes for some time.

In addition, he said students will take turns to attend school, with attendance set at 50 per cent of the classroom capacity to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission.

Radzi said all schools in Phase One of PPN, however, will remain closed and their students will continue with home-based teaching and learning (PdPR).

As for Phase Two states, special needs students will be allowed to attend school without any rotation while primary pupils will continue with PdPR.

He said for secondary students in Phase Two, only Form Six second semester students, third semester students of Sports Schools pre-university programmes and those taking international examinations will be allowed to attend school.

As for states in Phase 3 of the PPN, the reopening of schools will also include preschool and private kindergarten pupils without rotation, while for secondary schools, it will involve full boarding school students sitting for public examinations (without rotation) and daily or private schools sitting for public examinations (rotation), Radzi said.

For states in Phase 4, he said Years One, Two, Three will attend school on a rotational basis from Oct 17 onwards, he added, while Years Four, Five and Six will do the same, also on rotation, from Oct 31.

“Also beginning Oct 17, public examination classes, Form Three and Form Four students in full boarding schools will be allowed to attend classes on a rotational basis, while those in Forms One, Two and Three in daily and private schools will attend on a rotational basis. Form One and Form Two will continue with PdPR,” he said.

On vocational schools, Radzi said schooling will first resume with Phase two states and onwards on rotation according to the examinations they are sitting for and semesters they are in.

He also said that Institutes of Teacher Education (IPG) and Matriculation College students in Phase One and Two will continue PdPR, while those in Phases Three and Four who have been fully vaccinated with the COVID-19 vaccine will be given the choice to attend campus while those unvaccinated will continue with PdPR.

In addition, Radzi central region private education institutes (IPS) in Phase One and Phase Two states will operate via PdPR while for pupils aged four to six in Phase Three, classes will operate fully while other classes will operate on rotation with a 50 per cent class capacity

For Phase Four students, class capacity is increased to 70 per cent, also on rotation, from Oct 17 while full capacity with physical distancing will be allowed from Oct 31.

He said that the reopening of schools in areas that have been classified as travel bubbles will follow Phase Four operations.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

HCTM to resume as non-COVID-19 hospital in Oct if cases continue to dip

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 12 — Hospital Canselor Tuanku Muhriz Hospital (HCTM) Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) is expected to resume its operations as a non-COVID-19 hospital early next month if the number of COVID-19 patients at the hospital continues to decline.

Its director Prof Datuk Dr Razman Jarmin said the number of COVID-19 patients admitted at the hospital has been declining since the beginning of this month due to the downward trend of cases in the Klang Valley and if this continues the hospital will resume operating as a non-COVID-19 hospital as planned by HTCM’s COVID-19 Response Committee.

“HCTM also recorded an increase in non-COVID-19 cases coming to the emergency department. The recovery phase for COVID-19 patients to non-COVID-19 patients has started this week with the decrease in bed occupancy,” he said, adding bed usage at its COVID-19 Intensive Care Unit (ICU) remains the same.

The hospital’s management would continue to assess the admission trend of COVID-19 patients and if it continues to decline then the hospital would resume its operations as a non-COVID-19 hospital early next month, he said.

Apart from HCTM, UKM’s Children’s Specialist Hospital (HPKK) in Cheras is also used as a COVID-19 hospital accommodating about 140 COVID-19 patients from categories three to five, while HCTM is currently treating 109 COVID-19 patients of various categories.

Meanwhile, UKM vice-chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Mohd Ekhwan Toriman told Bernama the average daily admission of COVID-19 patients at HCTM for July was 48 people, dropping significantly in August when only an average of 19 people was admitted per day.

The number continued to decline, he said, adding that on Aug 26, 10 new admissions related to COVID-19 were reported, Aug 27 (nine), Aug 28 (seven), Aug 29 (12), Aug 30 (18), Aug 31 (nine), Sept 1 (five) and Sept 2 (eight).

According to Mohd Ekhwan, a total of 900 COVID-19 patients have been admitted to HCTM and in August alone 257 patients were treated at the hospital of which 27 of them were in the ICU.

He said HPKK helped to reduce congestions of COVID-19 patients at hospitals around the Klang Valley especially Kuala Lumpur Hospital (HKL) and Tengku Ampuan Rahimah Hospital (HTAR), thus it had not registered any decline in COVID-19 patients’ admissions.

Mohd Ekhwan said HCTM began assisting the Ministry of Health in dealing with COVID-19 cases in March last year when it was declared as a COVID-19 hospital on March 30 and was tasked to treat cases from major clusters detected in the Klang Valley including the Malayan Mansion cluster and the Tahfiz Madrasah Miftahul Ulum Seri Petaling cluster.

The teaching hospital was also selected to administer COVID-19 vaccines to UKM healthcare personnel during phase one of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme last year, he added.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency