KUALA LUMPUR (July 24): Physical attendance of media personnel for news coverage of Parliament's special meeting that will begin on Monday (July 26) has been limited to 72 people.
And these 72 will be people from 19 pre-approved media agencies, including four official media, namely RTM, Bernama, the Information Services Department and the National Film Development Corp Malaysia (FINAS). The other 15 agencies are: TV AlHijrah, TV3, Berita Harian, New Straits Times, Astro Awani, Utusan Malaysia, Sinar Harian, The Star, The Sun, Sin Chew Daily, Nanyang Siang Pau, Malaysia Nanban, Channel NewsAsia, Malaysiakini and PNBBC.
"In choosing these news agencies, the Malaysian Parliament secretariat has taken into consideration the need to ensure as many news agencies as possible, the types, as well as the language and extent of news coverage of the agencies involved to ensure quality coverage of the special session that can be followed by all layers of society.
"Even though physical attendance of the media in the Parliament building is limited because of constraints [brought by] the Covid-19 pandemic, the Malaysian Parliament will introduce and provide a hybrid press conference platform and exclusive interactive interview sessions with the Members of Parliament (MPs) via the Zoom application," said Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Azhar Azizan Harun in a statement.
The virtual press conferences and media interviews will give a chance to media practitioners who cannot be physically present in the Parliament building to take part in news coverage of the special session, he said. The five-day sitting will take place from July 26 to 29 and on Aug 2.
For this purpose, the Malaysian Parliament will prepare a special room to place two computers, complete with audiovisual facilities and a special link to Zoom, he said.
Media personnel can contact the press secretary of the Dewan Rakyat Speaker or Parliament's Corporate Communications Division if they wish to arrange an interactive session with any MPs. Likewise, the MPs can do the same to interact exclusively with the media, either as a group or on a one-to-one basis, he added.
Media practitioners can also follow the proceedings of Dewan Rakyat live via the Malaysian Parliament's YouTube live stream or the official website at http://rtmparlimen.rtm.gov.my/.
All important photographs throughout the proceedings will be taken by the official photographer of the Malaysian Parliament, together with the photographer from the Information Services Department, and the media will be able to access them via a link that will be prepared, said Azhar.
"I hope this new media management approach will be able to help reduce the risk of Covid-19 infection, especially among media practitioners in the Malaysian Parliament. I am also very honoured to lead Parliament in exploring the new norms of the world of journalism," he said, adding that the last was in line with the Industry 4.0 revolution and at the same time will help ease the burden on media practitioners, who are facing limited mobility due to the movement control order (MCO).
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