KUALA LUMPUR, April 8 — The Malaysian National News Agency (Bernama) can rise to become the number one news brand in Southeast Asia with the strengths and advantages its employees possess, said newly appointed Bernama chairman, Suhaimi Sulaiman.
He said to achieve this, the national news agency must be resourceful enough to leverage on creativity to stay relevant not only domestically, but also on the global stage.
“As a consultant in Bernama for the past six months, I have seen enough to suggest that we have that capability. Bernama also has its foreign correspondents, so why only confine this potential domestically,” he said when interviewed live over Bernama Radio via Skype here today.
Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah today announced Suhaimi’s appointment as the new chairman of the Bernama’s Board of Governors for a one-year term. He succeeds media personality Datuk Seri Azman Ujang, whose contract of service has ended.
Suhaimi, 57, who is also known as a broadcast personality and media strategist, said Bernama needs to adapt to borderless technological advancements to stay relevant as an agency that disseminates the various types of information wanted by the people.
Suhaimi said Bernama needs to be more open and learn how to innovate its approach in delivering information on each of its platforms.
He also hoped that Bernama’s workforce will continue to be committed in their duties and as a media agency respected for their journalistic integrity and credibility.
“We must focus on the three main aspects, and that is ‘we inform, educate and we entertain’ the public. At the same time, we must ensure what we deliver is what our audience wants to know and hear,” Suhaimi, who has some 30 years of experience in broadcasting and journalism behind him, said.
Having had his early education at Malay College Kuala Kangsar (MCKK) in Perak, Suhaimi went on to further his tertiary studies in the United States.
He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Portland State University, Portland, Oregon, United States, and a Master of Business Administration from City University, Bellevue, Washington, United States.
Suhaimi began his working career as a corporate and banking executive with Bank of Commerce Berhad between 1988 and 1990.
He then joined Malaysia’s first private television network, TV3 in 1990 where he made a name for himself in broadcast journalism. His last post in TV3 was as Manager, News and Current Affairs, before leaving the station in 2003.
In 2007, Suhaimi joined Malaysia’s first 24-hour news channel, Astro Awani as Executive Producer and went on to hold several positions in the organisation with his last post there as Chief Executive Officer and Editor-in-Chief.