KEPALA BATAS, May 18 — Five former media practitioners living in the vicinity of Kepala Batas received much-needed assistance from Tabung Kasih@Hawana today

The assistance was presented by Malaysian National News Agency (Bernama) chief executive officer Nur-ul Afida Kamaludin to married couples Mohd Idrus Mohd Ali and Zuraida Abdul Rahman, Luqman Hakim Quek Abdullah and Sarimah Othman, as well as Azizah Abdul Majid.

“Today we come to Penang once again to meet up with former media practitioners here and at the same time catch up with them and find out how they are, our former colleagues who served in Bernama, Utusan and Karang Kraf.


“Bernama will do its best to help those affected... and we will continue to identify those in need from among current and former media practitioners,” she said after presenting the aid to the five recipients today.

She added that Tabung Kasih@Hawana has currently identified up to 100 former and current media practitioners in need of assistance, and would continue to do its best to reach out to them.

Azizah, 72, who was better known as Azizah Zahari Majid when she was on the radio, worked as a broadcaster and producer at Radio Televisyen Malaysia (RTM) from 1973 to 2000, shared that she currently suffered from kidney problems, high blood pressure and diabetes.


The mother of six, who also has 12 grandchildren, admitted that life was tough for her as she needed to buy certain medicines from the pharmacy on a monthly basis as they were not available at government hospitals, and had to frequently visit health clinics and government hospitals for continued treatment and medication.

“Alhamdulillah, I’m so thankful and grateful to Tabung Kasih@Hawana for identifying me and providing me with some aid today, it does ease my burden, my only hope is that the government will consider monthly aid for those of us who did not receive pensions as what was championed previously by the RTM Veterans Association,” she said.

Meanwhile, married couple Sarimah, 61 and Luqman Hakim Quek, 54, both former editors in Bernama, are currently trying to eke out a living by selling curry puffs at a stall and providing catering services.

Sarimah said she and her husband were contract employees and when their contract ended in 2019, they tried their hand at a batik business but had to shut down due to the Covid-19 pandemic, which was when they returned to stay in Permatang Tinggi B here.

“Now we solely depend on the sale of curry puffs and other food like Sarawak mee and kolok mee if there are orders, so I’m really grateful that both of us received aid from Tabung Kasih@Hawana, and thank you for not forgetting former media practitioners like us,” she said.

Meanwhile, former Bernama Penang bureau chief Zuraida, 61, said she and her husband Mohd Idrus,61, a former chief journalist at Penang Sinar Harian had to cope with heart problems and strokes, and were currently receiving treatment at Seberang Jaya Hospital and Penang Hospital.

Zuraida, who took early retirement in 2009, shared that she suffered a stroke in September last year while suffering from heart problems, but considered herself lucky for managing to receive treatment at the onset of her problems.

“My husband also had a stroke and is still being treated till now, but Alhamdulillah, we are getting better and we still need to go for our appointments at the hospital, so I really want to thank Tabung Kasih@Hawana for thinking of us,” she added.

Tabung Kasih@Hawana was set up in conjunction with the Hawana 2023 celebrations with the aim of reaching out to former and current journalists and media practitioners in need of assistance.

The fund is an initiative by the Communications Ministry and implemented by Bernama. — Bernama