KAMPAR, July 16 — The Communications and Digital Ministry (KKD) will hold discussions with the Social Security Organisation (Socso) and relevant parties regarding contributions for journalists, especially stringers (part-time journalists).
Its Minister Fahmi Fadzil said he had discussed the matter with KKD secretary-general Datuk Mohamad Fauzi Md Isa and hoped that contributions to Socso for the group are made soon.
He said that the ministry needs to look into the issues faced by the stringers who are not working for organisations or media companies full-time.
“There have been cases where stringers were involved in accidents that rendered them unable to work, but the cost of rehabilitation is quite high and is currently not covered by Socso.
“So there are some things that we want to look into and improve because stringers, in my opinion, complete the ecosystem for media practitioners and help a lot, so we want to look at what we can do to help more stringers,” he told reporters here today.
Earlier, he visited Ng Kan Seng, a freelance journalist who is currently unwell, at his home to deliver aid and show support to him.
Also present were Malaysian National News Agency (Bernama) Chief Executive Officer Roslan Ariffin; Bernama Domestic News Service Deputy Editor-in-Chief Nur-ul Afida Kamaludin and Bernama Economic News Service Deputy Editor-in-Chief D. Arul Rajoo who is also the National Journalists’ Day (HAWANA) 2023 project director.
Fahmi, who presented the donation via Tabung Kasih@HAWANA to Ng, 68, said the freelance journalist had worked for several Chinese-language newspapers including Nanyang Siang Pau, Kwong Wah Yit Poh and Sin Chew Daily, specifically in the Kampar area.
He said that it might be difficult for Ng to continue working in the field of journalism as he also had to take care of his wife Ting Kit Khim, 62, who suffered a stroke and was unable to walk.
“He devotes his time to his wife and younger brother Ng Kin Kok, 66, who has a spinal cord injury due to an accident. The aid we are delivering today is in the form of essential goods and cash which we hope can help reduce Ng’s burden,” he said.
Tabung Kasih@Hawana was established in conjunction with HAWANA 2023 to reach out to media practitioners, former media personnel and veteran journalists who are in need of help.
It is an initiative of the KKD and is implemented through Bernama as part of continuing efforts to help the media community grapple with the challenges of life.
Meanwhile, Ng, a father of three when met, expressed his gratitude to Fahmi, Bernama and all parties involved for assisting him and his family in reducing their burden.
Earlier in Batu Gajah, the HAWANA 2023 secretariat also presented a donation from Tabung Kasih@HAWANA to Bernama stringer Razif Rosli, who is suffering from kidney disease.
The aid was contributed by KKD, Bank Rakyat Malaysia Berhad, Pusat Pakaian Hari-Hari, Mydin, Aeon Big, MSM Malaysia Holdings Berhad and the National Higher Education Fund Corporation.
Apart from Ng and Razif, a total of 10 other media practitioners have received Tabung Kasih@Hawana donations since April 14, 2023.