KUCHING, Aug 8: Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg has written a letter to express his support for four contract Sarawakian medical officers (MO) to be given permanent posts.
Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) Education Bureau chairman Datuk Ding Kuong Hiing revealed that the Chief Minister had written a letter to the Deputy Health Minister Datuk Aaron Ago Dagang on Aug 3.
“In the letter to Aaron, Abang Johari indicated his support for the applications of MOs who are currently on contract to be given permanent posts. A copy of the letter was extended to me.
“I would like to thank Abang Johari for his sympathetic concern and kind support given to the MOs. He is truly a Chief Minister for all Sarawakians irrespective of race, religion and culture,” he emphasised in a statement after a press conference in Sibu today.
The predicaments and dilemma faced by the Sarawakian MOs who were on contract basis is still ongoing.
Ding shared that the issue came to their attention in December 2019 and to-date, the Bureau has received only four names of MO who had passed part of their post graduate courses but their contracts were not renewed by the Ministry of Health (MOH).
“Sometime in January 2020, the then Health Minister Datuk Dr Zulkifly Ahmed agreed to extend the contracts of the MOs in Sarawak.
“But Pakatan Harapan (PH) government was toppled in March 2020 and the present Health Minister Datuk Sri Dr Adham Baba announced on April 15 that a six-month contract was offered to 79 MOs, 853 dental officers and 1,139 pharmacists on a one-off basis,” he explained.
When parents of Sarawakian MOs approached the Bureau for assistance to help secure for permanent posts, it then led to a pro-tem committee of Malaysian Junior Doctors Association (MJDA) being formed in May 2020.
Ding added that MJDA had written twice to the Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin as well as 222 MPs on Jun 30 and July 23 respectively.
“On July 28, on behalf of the parents, I wrote a letter to Abang Johari asking for his support that the four MOs be given permanent posts. This is the first time the parents had asked the Chief Minister for help,” he said.
Meanwhile, only four names were given to Abang Johari as they were the only ones who had approached the Bureau for help.
Ding further revealed that in the last press conference held on July 22, there were another three fathers present, whose children also faced the same problem.
“However, their names were not given to us because the parents feared that their children would be victimised by relevant authorities,” he said.
SUPP Education Bureau is urging all Sarawakian MOs who are facing discontinuation of their contracts to talk to them for assistance.—DayakDaily