Women's role in media to be highlighted during National Journalists Day 2022

A file picture of media personnel in the field. — ART CHEN/The Star

PETALING JAYA: The participation of the Malaysian Women Journalists Association (Pertama) in the National Journalists Day 2022 (Hawana 2022) on May 29 is not only to support journalism in the country but also to highlight the crucial role of women journalists in recording the nation's history and milestone events, said Pertama president Sariha Mohd Ali.

Hawana 2022 will be officiated by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob in Melaka after it was held for the first time in 2018 to recognise the role of Malaysian journalists and media practitioners.

Sariha said the association would take full advantage of the country's largest gathering of journalists and media practitioners, including the presence of colleagues from regional countries and foreign correspondents in the country.

"This is the ideal opportunity to promote Pertama not only among local media practitioners but also abroad as Hawana 2022 will also involve journalists from neighbouring countries like Indonesia.

"We want to look for opportunities to work with journalist associations from abroad to further strengthen the involvement of women journalists by building an international network," she said after Pertama's annual general meeting (AGM) here on Saturday.

Hawana 2022 is being organised by the Malaysian National News Agency (Bernama) with support from the Ikatan Setia Kawan Wartawan Malaysia Indonesia (Iswami) and the Communications and Multimedia Ministry

Iswami Malaysia has invited 17 key media leaders from Indonesia including Iswami Indonesia to attend programmes to be held in conjunction with the Hawana celebration.

Sariha said Pertama would also strive to attract more young women journalists to join the association as a platform to strengthen the network of media workers from various organisations, and also to look after their welfare.

She said programmes were planned to reactivate Pertama after two low-key years due to restrictions imposed during the Covid-19 pandemic.

"Pertama consistently provides various forms of assistance to female media partners to overcome problems, including the death of family members, hospitalisation and pilgrimage contributions as well as other benefits.

"We hope that Pertama, founded by the late Azah Aziz in 1971, will continue to be resilient as an umbrella for female journalists in this country," she said.

At the AGM, Pertama members unanimously retained Sariha, who is also BH news editor, as president for the 2022/2024 term, her third consecutive term.

She is assisted by deputy president Nasriah Darus, who is Bernama Malay language chief sub-editor; secretary Nor Hasliza Abdullah (Bernama English language chief sub-editor); assistant secretary Minarni Mat Saad; treasurer M. Saraswathi (Bernama business and financial services editor) and assistant treasurer Adlina Abdul Wahab.

Also appointed were seven committee members from various media organisations, including veterans, to help implement Pertama programmes. – Bernama

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