HSA fire sees Malaysian volunteerism at its best


JOHOR BAHRU: The attitude of helping others, especially when the country is hit by disaster, is a value that continues to be a strength in Malaysia’s diverse society.

Head of Darul Takzim Volunteer Mission Mohd Shafie Salam said following the fire which broke out at the Intensive Care Unit of Sultanah Aminah Hospital (HSA) on Tuesday, many quarters responded by offering various forms of assistance, including coming forward as volunteers.

“We received all forms of assistance, not just food and drinks, from various non-governmental organisations, private companies and government agencies, as well as more than 200 volunteers,” he said when met by Bernama.

The incident at HSA is said to be the worst hospital fire in the country as six people were killed and four others injured.

Mohd Shafie said people from all walks of life, regardless of race and religion, came forward to offer assistance and work as a team.

Meanwhile, Johor Bahru People’s Volunteer Corps (Rela) senior enforcement deputy Tukimin Juraimi said Rela members were tasked with distributing food and drinks at the scene and would be stationed there until the situation at HSA returned to normal.

“The Darul Takzim Volunteer Mission, together with Rela members and NGOs, pulled resources to ensure operations at HSA ran smoothly,” he added.

A lecturer at Cosmopoint College in Johor Bahru, Mazuin Osman, said about 30 students from the college registered as volunteers to help out at HSA following the tragedy.

They helped buy food and drinks and distributed these to staff and patients at the hospital, she added.

Besides student volunteers from Cosmopoint, there were also volunteers from the Johor Education Foundation, Universiti Tun Hussein Onn and Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM).