MTUC S’wk Secretary criticises Dr Sim’s Facebook postings on Covid-19

Andrew Lo

KUCHING, Nov 3: Malaysian Trade Union (MTUC) Sarawak Secretary Andrew Lo criticised Minister of Local Government and Housing Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian for his preemptive statements posted in his Facebook.

Lo said as a member of Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC), Dr Sim should let the committee make the official statements to avoid confusion.

“It is disappointing that even ministers like Dr Sim Khui Hian post regular updates and advisory via his Facebook page. As a minister and part of the SDMC, most readers will take his posts as the gospel truth, nothing but the truth.

“However, some of his post creates unnecessary anxiety and are not entirely accurate,” Lo disclosed in a statement issued here today.

Taking an example, Lo said Dr Sim’s update via his Facebook post yesterday (Nov 2) was misleading.

“According to him, there are three news cases from Cluster Wisma Saberkas. Yet in the same post he also claimed: ‘Meanwhile a new cluster is announced today – Cluster Wisma Saberkas with eight new positive cases detected so far’. Which is which?” asked Lo.

He added that such confusion contributed to the general despair and anxiety among the public.

“It also seems to preempt the SDMC and not helpful, especially to workers who suffers from the economic fall out of the pandemic. (So), please don’t preempt SDMC,” Lo opined.

Lo however commended all the front liners including SDMC which is headed by Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas.

“Kuching has seen an increase in Covid-19 positive cases recently. The Ministry of Health and SDMC has the unenviable task of managing and trying to contain with the increase. Our thoughts and gratitude go out to the front liners battling the dreadful virus,” he said.

Lo reiterated that SDMC faced a daunting task in trying to formulate action plans and to disseminate accurate information to the public to allow everyone to make informed and rational decisions.

“As expected the millions of social media posts from private citizens is not helpful at all. Most are not verified and the misinformation tend to create fear and anxiety at best and panic at worse.

“I appreciate it is difficult to prevent people to viral such misinformation. I know of many with more than 100 groups,” added Lo. — DayakDaily