Putrajaya Media Club chides Press Secretary’s rude answer to media

PETALING JAYA: The Putrajaya Media Club has chided the unprofessional attitude shown by the Health Minister's press secretary, Nik Azmi Nik Fathil, who has disparaged media practitioners.

In a statement, it said that Nik Azmi’s actions of belittling media practitioners who wanted clarification and additional information regarding statistics related to the program were completely unacceptable.

Majoriti reported the Media Club as saying that these actions do not reflect the position and responsibility entrusted to him.

"We media practitioners are always required to be ethical and present correct facts in reporting.

"However, if this is the reaction received, it will interfere with our duty to present an authentic, compact and quality report to the community," it said on Friday (May 17).

The statement was made following a complaint from several media practitioners who covered the National Health and Morbidity Survey Research Results Launch Ceremony (NHMS) 2023: Non-Communicable Diseases (NCD) and Health Care Demand and 'Global Adult Tobacco Survey' (GATS) Malaysia 2023 at the Health Ministry’s headquarters.

The Media Club added that when reporters asked Dr Dzulkefly (pic) a question during the press conference after the program, Nik Azmi intervened and answered on behalf of the Minister.

"Is this a new administration procedure that his Press Secretary can answer on behalf of the minister?

"Relationships between media practitioners and press secretaries to Ministers are very important in disseminating information, especially the policies, initiatives and achievements of the government that are beneficial and shape people's thinking, in addition to being a check and balance for the country.

"This rebuke is also addressed to the Heads of the Ministry's Corporate Communication Unit, officials at the Ministry's Corporate Communication Unit and public relations officers of any government or private agency or department that have direct interaction with media practitioners," it said.

Meanwhile, Nik Azmi apologised to media practitioners saying,

“I believe that I owe an apology to you and your team for the unfortunate incident earlier.

“I am sorry over what happened, and I assure you it won't happen again. Please accept my apologies and best wishes to you and your team.

“We are always thankful, and I am always thankful for the services rendered by media practitioners to bring good reporting to the people of Malaysia. Please do not hesitate to let me know if you need anything,” he said.

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