IPOH: Media personnel are frontliners who are in the high-risk group, as their job required them to meet people from all walks of life daily.
Therefore, all media practitioners should be vaccinated against Covid-19 and it should not be based on a quota basis, said PKR's Teja assemblyman Sandrea Ng.
Ng claimed she had also been told that in several states and districts, through the recommendation of assemblymen, some journalists had received their vaccinations.
She said this should not be based on a selective basis.
“Media personnel need to do coverage in hospitals, quarantine centres, as well as movement control order areas.
“For example in Ipoh, several reporters and photographers were quarantined after a bus driver who brought guests to a tourism event tested positive for Covid-19 on April 29.
“Thus, all media practitioners must be given the vaccination, and it should not be done on a selective basis, as they risk their health daily, ” she said at a press conference at the Gopeng MP’s community service centre on Monday (May 3).
Also present were PKR’s Simpang Pulai assemblyman Tan Kar Hing and DAP’s Pasir Pinji assemblyman Howard Lee.
Ng was referring to a Tourism Perak Management Berhad’s statement issued on Sunday (May 2) that tourism industry players, as well as several media members, were ordered to undergo swab tests and quarantine.
This came after a bus driver who attended the Wow Cuti programme held here from April 27 to 29 tested positive for Covid-19.
It was stated that the event organised by Tourism Malaysia Perak involved 25 industry players from neighbouring states, and that despite following all the standard operating procedures (SOP), the bus driver who brought the guests around at several locations in Perak tested positive.
The organiser according to the statement had obtained approval for a cross-state travel permit from the police for the purpose of official duties, namely by using a travel agency under the guidelines of the travel bubble.
“The matter came to light after the bus driver was scheduled to bring another group of tourists to Genting Highlands, and was ordered to perform a swab test at the Kampar Health Clinic on April 29, ” the statement added.
Recently the coordinating minister for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme Khairy Jamaluddin said about 1,500 journalists would be receiving their vaccinations this month.
He said that he had received the list from the National Union of Journalists, as well as journalist associations in Sarawak and Sabah.
Lee, meanwhile, urged the government to make it compulsory for all tour bus drivers and guides under the bubble to take a swab test before embarking on a journey.
He said the government should be responsible, and to make it a policy to safeguard the public.