News vendors appeal for help

Newspaper deliverymen wearing face masks for protection before going out on their delivery rounds in Penang. — Filepic

THE Penang Newspaper Vendors and Book Association, which is being badly affected by the movement control order (MCO), is seeking financial aid from the state government’s Covid-19 economic stimulus package.

Its president M. Murugesu said since the MCO, many of the retail newspaper outlets and newspaper stands had to close down as they were not under the essential services sector.

Murugesu said the papers could not be delivered to retail stores in public markets, roadside stalls and mini markets.

“Our vendors still have to go out to deliver newspapers every day while risking their health and livelihood due to Covid-19 as the papers have to reach their customers.

“We have to be out there to carry out our tasks although our income has been badly affected by the shutdown of the retail stores.

“However, we continue to deliver news during these trying times to ensure everyone is aware of what is going on in the country.

“As such, we need the aid from the stimulus package too, and hope the state would consider our request and extend the financial aid to our members, ” he said in a statement.

The state government recently announced a RM75mil Covid-19 economic stimulus package targetting the ‘very vulnerable’ groups.

Among those included in the stimulus package are hawkers, the B40 group, trishaw riders, taxi and e-hailing drivers and tourists guides.

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