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Fikirlah: Heeding Needs Of The Disabled

By Sakini Mohd Said

(This commentary is the personal opinion of the writer and is not necessarily a reflection of Bernama's stand on the matter.)

KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama) -- Despite being wheelchair-bound, Azila Alias often has to compete with able-bodied persons to use public facilities made for Persons with Disabilities (PWDs). Some of them even have the audacity to tell her off despite being in the wrong.

"Many people still use the facilities despite knowing that it is unethical to do so, such as using toilets for PWDs.

"However, when confronted about it, they would get angry. Some would just say 'sorry' curtly but some resort to snide comments, telling wheelchair-bound PWDs to just wait for our turn. They said that it was not like it was tiring for us to wait because we were just sitting anyway, " the 45-year-old told Bernama after an interview on her recent entrepreneurial project.

Azila was the table tennis bronze medal winner at the 2017 Asian Paralympic Games. She was born with Myelomeningocele, a type of spina bifida that often results in the most severe complications. Spina bifida is a birth defect in which the spinal canal and the backbone do not close before birth.

She said that it had become a common occurrence for PWDs to have to wait a long time to use a facility meant for them, as it was often misused by able-bodied persons.


Restore Independence Of Parliament -- Academic

By Kurniawati Kamarudin

KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama) -- The first meeting of the first session of the 14th Parliament next Monday is something Malaysians are eagerly awaiting as it also heralds the opening of a new chapter in the Dewan Rakyat.

The changeover at the federal government level - the first after six decades of rule by the Barisan Nasional - has Pakatan Harapan ruling the roost in the august House but whether or not its much-touted New Malaysia will be evident in the form of greater parliamentary independence remains to be seen.

The return of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamed as Prime Minister and Member of Parliament (Langkawi) to the House of Representatives, as well as the presence of young and enthusiastic MPs like Syed Saddiq Abdul Rahman, 25 (Muar) and P. Prabakaran, 22 (Batu), are bound to spice up the debates this time around.

All 222 MPs, including 121 representing Pakatan Harapan, will be sworn-in next Monday. Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Muhammad V will deliver his Royal address at 10 a.m. on Tuesday. The first meeting of the 14th Parliament will run for 20 days between July 16 and Aug 16.


As a symbol of this nation's democracy, Parliament is the foremost institution where the voices of the common people are heard and where laws are drafted, amended or repealed.


Third International Nuclear Human Resource Development Conference 2018 in Geongju, South Korea

Nuclear energy had its origins in military applications. In the years just before and during World War II (WWII) , nuclear research focused mainly on the development of defense weapons for use in WWII, with the MAUD Committee in the United Kingdom, the Manhattan Project in the US and key teams in Germany as well as the then Soviet Union according top priority and investments in this technology.


Social Activist On Mission To Unify Community

By Kurniawati Kamarudin

KUALA SELANGOR ( Bernama) -- The blue Perodua Kelisa car may have seen better days but it is a familiar vehicle for the people residing in the poorer sections of Bestari Jaya.

Its owner Kumaran Nagapa is ever ready to ferry people, who cannot afford to take public transport, to the government hospital in Sungai Buloh for their follow-up appointments or treatments.

At other times, he can be seen running up and down the stairs at some government office or other in Kuala Selangor trying to get help to resolve a host of problems faced by the locals, with the most pressing ones relating to applications for identity cards and seeking aid from the Social Welfare Department and Selangor Zakat Centre.

During weekends, he will be busy conducting tutorial classes for primary school children at a centre located within the compound of Masjid Al Awwabim in Bestari Jaya.

Helping people in need has become the daily routine for this 40-year-old busy bee who chose to become a social activist about six years ago.


Nasi Uduk, Indonesia's Answer To Nasi Lemak

By Safira Pratiwi Satriyandinar

The writer Safira Pratiwi Satriyandinar, who is from Jakarta, Indonesia, and currently pursuing a degree in communications at the International Islamic University Malaysia, is fascinated with the local favourite "nasi lemak" that has a close resemblance to her country's "nasi uduk''.

KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama) -- "Nasi lemak", a favourite dish of Malaysians, has such a wide appeal that even fast-food chains feature it in their menus.

Even its Indonesian close cousin, "nasi uduk" was available at the McDonald's outlets over there for a limited period.

Not only are the two dishes almost similar to each other, they are also very popular among the people.

Nasi uduk has its origins in Jakarta itself and was the traditional food of the Betawi ethnic community who are natives of this city. Nasi uduk is, of course, now available all over Indonesia.

Incidentally, nasi lemak is popular on the east coast of Sumatra where Malay communities live.


Delhi Diary: Preserving Islamic Art Of Calligraphy

By Shakir Husain

Shakir Husain, Bernama correspondent in New Delhi shares his side of the story from the Indian sub-continent.

NEW DELHI (Bernama) -- When the Mughal era in South Asia came to an end, it was a devastating blow to the flourishing Islamic arts and culture.

Calligraphy was one practice that was deprived of patronage and faced a gradual decline.

The rulers used to employ calligraphers to produce artistic writing for literature, crafts and architecture.

In post-independent India, the dwindling community of calligraphers found refuge in the marginalised Urdu newspaper industry.

They wrote headlines in lovely patterns and styles but such work neither brought them much recognition nor monetary rewards as the Urdu press increasingly faced financial difficulties and loss of readership.


Column: Food Waste And The Way Forward

By Ravindran Raman Kutty

In this write-up by Ravindran Raman Kutty - an avid writer, community worker, award-winning communications practitioner and social activist with a profound love for the environment ? he shares his views on curbing food waste.

KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama) -- We welcome our new government that feels the pulse of the people who are awed by the reform agenda and the daily shake-ups taking place. I am inspired to draw the attention of the newly appointed Housing and Local Government Minister to the serious issue of food waste in our country.

One in every nine people in the world has no access to sufficient food to lead a healthy life. More are reported to die from hunger every day in comparison to AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis combined.

On the other hand, nearly one-third of the food that is produced in the world is lost or wasted. Food wastage, which includes both food loss and food waste, is not only morally irresponsible but a huge contributor to economic loss and damage to the world environment.

Food loss takes place as a result of insufficient skills, natural calamities, lack of proper infrastructure and poor practices. Food waste occurs when edible food is intentionally discarded by people when they fail to plan their meals or store food properly until it goes past the expiry date. Food waste can also happen due to oversupply in markets. Retailers tend to reject food that does not conform to their quality and aesthetic standards. The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) reports that nearly one-third of all food produced in the world for human consumption does not find its way to our tables.

More than 50 per cent of the waste occurs during the post-harvest handling and storage phase, whilst another 50 per cent is wasted during the processing, distribution and consumption stage.