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SPPP assures Pangkalan Raja Tun Uda traders’ future

The Penang Port Commission (SPPP) will ensure the welfare of all traders at Raja Tun Uda Ferry Terminal is protected after the transfer of ferry operations to the Swettenham Pier Cruise Terminal (SPCT).

SPPP chairman Datuk Tan Teik Cheng said SPPP had met all the traders affected by the relocation of ferry operations for pedestrians and guarantees had been given to them.

“I have assured them (traders) that we are planning to temporarily transfer them to SPCT so that they can continue their business.

“We need about two weeks for the renovation process at SPCT before they are allowed to do business there,” he told reporters after conducting a survey of the first day of the Penang fast boat operation here, today.

He said SPPP also intended to provide free rent for a while to those who would move from the Raja Tun Uda Ferry Terminal to SPCT.

So far, Tan said almost 10 stalls at the Tun Uda Ferry Terminal would be affected by the transfer of ferry operations for pedestrians to SPCT.

Previously, traders at the Raja Tun Uda Ferry Terminal had expressed concern about the future of their business after ferry operations for pedestrians had moved to SPCT which is about 1 kilometre from where they now trade.

Meanwhile, Tan said the fast boat operation which started operating at 6.30 this morning had run smoothly.

He said the two fast boats operating to carry the pedestrian passengers were expected to be able to reach 10,000 people until 11 pm later.

“The maximum capacity of a fast boat is 200 passengers and we provide one boat every 30 minutes,” he said.

Starting today, the fast boat services would be used to carry pedestrian passengers to replace the iconic ferry, which already been operating for 126 years.

The existing ferry would only be used for cyclists and motorcyclists until July 2022, while the ferry service for cars was terminated from today.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

SPPP assures Pangkalan Raja Tun Uda traders’ future

The Penang Port Commission (SPPP) will ensure the welfare of all traders at Raja Tun Uda Ferry Terminal is protected after the transfer of ferry operations to the Swettenham Pier Cruise Terminal (SPCT).

SPPP chairman Datuk Tan Teik Cheng said SPPP had met all the traders affected by the relocation of ferry operations for pedestrians and guarantees had been given to them.

“I have assured them (traders) that we are planning to temporarily transfer them to SPCT so that they can continue their business.

“We need about two weeks for the renovation process at SPCT before they are allowed to do business there,” he told reporters after conducting a survey of the first day of the Penang fast boat operation here, today.

He said SPPP also intended to provide free rent for a while to those who would move from the Raja Tun Uda Ferry Terminal to SPCT.

So far, Tan said almost 10 stalls at the Tun Uda Ferry Terminal would be affected by the transfer of ferry operations for pedestrians to SPCT.

Previously, traders at the Raja Tun Uda Ferry Terminal had expressed concern about the future of their business after ferry operations for pedestrians had moved to SPCT which is about 1 kilometre from where they now trade.

Meanwhile, Tan said the fast boat operation which started operating at 6.30 this morning had run smoothly.

He said the two fast boats operating to carry the pedestrian passengers were expected to be able to reach 10,000 people until 11 pm later.

“The maximum capacity of a fast boat is 200 passengers and we provide one boat every 30 minutes,” he said.

Starting today, the fast boat services would be used to carry pedestrian passengers to replace the iconic ferry, which already been operating for 126 years.

The existing ferry would only be used for cyclists and motorcyclists until July 2022, while the ferry service for cars was terminated from today.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Kelantan targets 150 hectares for pineapple cultivation next year

— The Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industries is targeting to have more than 150 hectares of land in Kelantan cultivated with pineapples from the Cobek (pull apart), Madu Kaca and MD2 varieties next year, said Deputy Minister Datuk Che Abdullah Mat Nawi.

Che Abdullah said farmers living in Bachok, Kota Bharu and Pasir Puteh districts with sandy loam type of soil would also have the opportunity to plant the crop.

He said the income raised from cultivating pineapples could match the income earned by the farmers from planting tobacco, which these places were previously known for.

He said this to reporters during his visit to the pineapple venture project between the Bachok Vocational College cooperatives and Kota Eze Sdn Bhd here today.

Also present was Kelantan Malaysia Pineapple Industry Board (MPIB) director Mohd Zamani Ab Ghani.

Che Abdullah said Kelantan has great potential in pineapple cultivation as its land is fertile.

In addition, he said pineapples have become increasingly popular among people from every segment of society yet the supply is still insufficient.

He said throughout 2019, 300 hectares of land had been cultivated with the crop with a production value of RM7 million, managed by MPIB.

“This year, the ministry through MPIB has allocated RM2.4 million to help the state’s pineapple growers to expand to Pasir Mas, Tanah Merah, Kuala Krai, Machang and Bachok,” he said.

He said a total of 103 pineapple farmers cultivating almost 70 hectares of land in the areas received various incentives from the government.

On the pineapple cultivation project, Che Abdullah said it provided exposure and training to the students in the field of agriculture where they learn proper techniques and methods in pineapple cultivation.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Amendments to Act 177 to come into effect on Jan 1 – Saravanan

— The Industrial Relations Act 1967 (Act 177) which was amended in December last year will come into force on Jan 1, 2021 to improve the protection of workers’ rights in the country, said Human Resources Minister Datuk Seri M. Saravanan.

He said the key areas of amendments included the repeal of the human resources minister’s power to refer representations on dismissal cases to the Industrial Court which will instead be given to the Director-General for Industrial Relations as well as the repeal of discretionary power to refer cases to the Industrial Court without further filtering.

Other amendments were the employer or employee may be represented by any person of their choice, except lawyers, during the conciliation process at the Department of Industrial Relations and the application of the provision of representation on reinstatement (Section 20) may be extended to employees of statutory bodies by order of the Human Resources minister, after consultations with the statutory body.

“Beginning Jan 1, 2021, in addition to procedures related to promotion, trade unions can also negotiate about general issues related to the exchange, recruitment, termination of services due to labour surplus, dismissal and reinstatement as well as distribution of tasks.

“The punishment of imprisonment for illegal picketing and strikes have been abolished in line with international labour standards,” he said in a statement here today.

Saravanan said through this amendment, the Industrial Court may continue to conduct the proceedings notwithstanding the death of the employee who made the representation and order the payment of back wages or compensation in lieu of reinstatement or both to the next-of-kin of the deceased employee.

Besides that, the Industrial Court may lower the award without being bound by the restrictions set out in the Second Schedule if the dismissal is due to a violation of the right to freedom of union; the Industrial Court shall charge interest of up to eight per cent per annum or at a lower rate.

“Parties who are dissatisfied with the Industrial Court award can submit an appeal directly to the High Court within 14 days after the award is received,” he said.

Further information about the amended act will be uploaded on the websites of the Human Resources Ministry and the Industrial Relations Department in the near future.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

MOTAC launches Safe2Spa Jom Spa campaign to boost local spa, wellness industry

The Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry (MOTAC) launched the Safe2Spa Jom Spa campaign today as part of efforts to help the local spa industry recover following the COVID-19 pandemic.

Minister Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri said that 10,000 discount vouchers worth RM30 each will be distributed to customers at all spas and foot massage centres under the supervision of the Association of Malaysian Spas (AMSPA) and the Malaysian Association of Wellness and Spa (MAWSPA) in conjunction with the campaign, which will run till March 31.

“Customers can redeem or enjoy the RM30 discount with a minimum spend of RM60 in a single transaction receipt,” she said in a statement.

Should the effort achieve its objective, the ministry will continue to provide support so that the spa industry can continue to grow, she said.

In addition, the ministry urged all spa and wellness operators to always adhere to the standard operating procedure set by the National Security Council and to adapt to the new norms.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

BKOA focuses on generating income for Orang Asli community

Badan Kebajikan Orang Asli Islam Semenanjung Malaysia (BKOA) wants to cooperate with more entrepreneurs or companies to assist the Orang Asli community get their own source of income instead of relying on donations.

Its president Senator Datuk Isa Abdul Hamid said so far, seven companies have come forward to assist the non-governmental organisation (NGO), which represents indigenous people in Peninsular Malaysia, to market their products through buying and donating campaign to fill up the COVID-19 fund for the Orang Asli community.

“Through this cooperation, we market products such as disposable and reusable face masks, disinfectant liquid and hand sanitisers via our website at https://bkoa.org.my/ with all proceeds channelled to BKOA.

“The initiative is to help the government improve the delivery system for the Orang Asli community with the NGO serves as the second platform and in turn, making it more dynamic by generating more income for the group.”

He said this in his speech during the launch of COVID-19 fund donations to Orang Asli at the Parliament building today by the Malaysian Senator’s Council president Datuk Seri Khairudin ES Abd Samad.

Isa said the website would also market Orang Asli forest products and handicrafts such as kelulut (stingless bees) honey, agarwood and tongkat ali in an effort to create more entrepreneurs among the community.

For long-term planning, he said BKOA would cooperate with foreign companies especially from China and Western Asia to market their products abroad and further expand its network.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

Industry associations urged to ensure companies safeguard workers’ welfare

— The Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities (MPIC) is urging industry associations to ensure that commodity and plantation-related companies always look after the welfare of their workers.

In a statement today, its Minister Datuk Dr Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali said the ministry was very serious about the incident that happened to the welfare of foreign workers at a rubber glove factory as reported yesterday.

The ministry strongly condemned the actions of a handful of companies that deliberately or unwilling to comply with the laws and regulations, he said.

He said the company is only concerned about profit without taking into account the comfort and safety factors of employees who are the main contributors to the company’s profits.

“This is because without the employees, companies and industries are unlikely to earn huge profits, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.

Mohd Khairuddin said as a responsible employer, it is the company’s duty to take care of the employees’ welfare as best as possible regardless of whether they are local or foreign.

He also urged the industry in all sectors including commodities and plantation to always abide by the labour laws and regulations set by the government.

“The ministry also hopes that industry associations take the responsibility to remind all members under their respective association to always abide by the provisions of laws and regulations and work with the government to address this issue from continuing in the future,” he added.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency