KUALA LUMPUR: Police arrested a shop assistant on suspicion of being involved in the murder of a foreign man at Jalan AU2A/14, Taman Keramat, near here, last night.© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
KUALA LUMPUR: Following the subsidy removal for bottled cooking oil from yesterday, small traders are claiming that there is a shortage of supply for 1kg cooking oil in polybags which continues to be subsidised by the government.© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
KUALA LUMPUR: The government is implementing short-, medium- and long-term measures to address the cost of living issue, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
SINGAPORE: The presence of Sorbic acid exceeding the maximum limit stated in the Singapore Food Regulations has been detected in "Goods" banana cakes from Malaysia, said the Singapore Food Agency (SFA).© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
THE Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the transformation of the global economic landscape.© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
JOHOR BARU: A kaleidoscope of colour, music and culture greeted visitors at the Austin Heights Private and International School (AHIS) as part of an event to mark International Day and Family Day.© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
SITIAWAN: A total of 35 influenza-like illness (ILI) outbreaks were recorded in Perak between January and today.© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) urges the Health Ministry to look into the maldistribution of doctors.© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
PENAMPANG: Barisan Nasional should employ a more aggressive strategy to court fence-sitters in the run-up to the 15th General Election, says the Umno secretary-general.© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
JOHOR BARU: Menteri Besar Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi rolled up his sleeves and spent almost an hour helping clean and sprucing up the state capital with some 500 other volunteers this morning.© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd
KUALA LUMPUR, July 2 — Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) president Dr Koh Kar Chai said today that some states in the country are experiencing a shortage of doctors.
Dr Koh said this was because the doctor-to-patient ratio may differ depending on the state, but the patient load is almost similar across the board.
“The MMA proposes that the Ministry of Health (MoH) and Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM) conduct mapping to look into the actual trend in general and subspecialty cases in each state and plan the human resources accordingly,” he said in a statement.
Dr Koh also said that state Health Departments must plan around the allocations of junior medical officers (floaters).
“The workforce must not be centred on these temporary workers, but instead planned with permanent allocations to the hospitals and departments,” he said.
He also pointed out that the issue of medical officers quitting is serious and must be addressed immediately as the medical industry is “haemorrhaging human capital which is desperately needed”.
“While caring for the rakyat, doctors too need adequate rest. If they are on call every other day, it will result in burnout,” he added.
Yesterday, MoH said that is no staffing crisis involving medical officers at Kuala Lumpur Hospital (HKL) and Tunku Azizah Hospital (HTA).
The ministry issued a statement in response to a letter purportedly written by HKL, which has since gone viral.
The letter warned that both hospitals would have a shortage of medical officers following a movement of junior doctors (floaters) out of the hospitals from July 18.
MoH said the transfers were a normal procedure to implement instructions and to process applications for the transfer of officers from time to time.
KUALA LUMPUR, July 2 ― All government-linked companies (GLCs) and government-linked investment companies (GLICs) need to appoint representatives of the Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) as their board members.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said that the move was an effort to add value to transparency, apart from enabling the voice of employees to be taken into account in all decisions made by the board.
“It is the government's hope that the employee representatives will also play a role in administrative matters later.
“Workers should also maintain stability, unity and industrial relations not only among themselves but also with the government and employers for the success of the national development process,” he said at the opening of the MTUC's 42nd triennial delegates' conference here today.
Ismail Sabri also described MTUC, which represents 16.5 million workers in the country, as a good government partner and plays an important role in helping to revive the country's economy which is now entering the transition phase to endemic.
With the ‘Pejuang Kaum Pekerja Sejak 1949’ as its slogan, Ismail Sabri said the MTUC showed the important role led by the workers themselves and also received government recognition.
He said that as a result, MTUC officials are given the honour of being members of various statutory and special bodies including the National Labour Advisory Council, the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) and the Social Security Organisation (Socso).
“This recognition proves the government’s confidence and trusts in MTUC to jointly consider and voice the problems of workers to help improve their welfare,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Prime Minister also announced an annual grant allocation of RM4 million to MTUC to implement significant awareness and training programmes.
Ismail Sabri added that MTUC also needed to create a more holistic, effective and comprehensive education plan for its union members as well as other Keluarga Malaysia (Malaysian Family) workers.
“Reskilling and upskilling are important keys in ensuring that Malaysia has a competitive workforce.
“I am confident that MTUC, through strategic education plans, can continue to play a very important role in producing dynamic employees,” he said.
At the same time, the Prime Minister said that as the parent body that fought for the rights and fate of workers, the MTUC needed to be mindful of the needs of union members, especially those belonging to the B40 group and the hardcore poor.
He added that the government, understanding the needs of workers in their daily lives, insisted on implementing the minimum wage on May 1.
“I want to say that it is not easy to implement the minimum wage. Employers do not agree with its implementation after the Covid-19 pandemic by giving various reasons.
Some have asked for a gradual increase but the government is adamant because we feel that today’s economic situation does not allow workers to live on monthly wages of less than RM1,500,” he said.
The event was also attended by Human Resources Minister Datuk Seri M. Saravanan and MTUC deputy president Mohd Effendy Abdul Ghani.
The MTUC's 42nd triennial delegates' conference, which will take place for two days starting today, will see the election of the new leader of the trade union congress for the 2023-2025 term. ― Bernama
KUALA LUMPUR, July 2 ― The Competition Act 2010 applies to any commercial activity within Malaysia, but the Act does not apply to commercial activities of four sectors, which the telecommunications and multimedia sector is one of them, said the Malaysia Competition Commission (MyCC).
Responding to repeated calls for MyCC to intervene in the proposed merger between Digi Bhd and Celcom Axiata Bhd, MyCC said in a statement today that telecommunications providers’ activities are subject to the scrutiny of the Malaysia Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC).
It added that MCMC regulates mergers within the telecommunications sector and other competition matters through provisions of the Communications and Multimedia Commission Act 1998.
“In this regard, MyCC leaves matters related to the said proposed merger to the wisdom of MCMC and is certain that it had carried out careful assessment and evaluation before reaching its decisions,” MyCC said.
Its chief executive officer Iskandar Ismail said that MyCC’s current amendment exercise, which will lead to the introduction of a merger control regime in Malaysia, is on track.
“Again, it must be highlighted that this merger regime will exclude, amongst others, the sector under the purview of MCMC.
“We hope that future decisions by MyCC on merger applications will be the main reference and guide for all other authorities in ensuring a consistent and robust policy landscape that will create certainty in the market,” he said. ― Bernama
KUCHING, July 2 — Sarawak Premier Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg today said he has asked the state attorney general (AG) to look into making Deepavali a gazetted public holiday in Sarawak.
He added this had been raised many times in the past.
“Actually, we have asked the state AG to look into it because our gazetted public holidays have reached the maximum number and we want to find out where we can slot in Deepavali so that we can gazette the day as part of our public holidays,” he said at the groundbreaking ceremony for the extension building of the Sikh Temple at Jalan Masjid here.
“I don’t promise, but I will try my best.”
Abang Johari was responding to Sarawak Sikh Temple Association president Dr Kalwinder Singh Khaira who had mentioned it in his speech earlier.
Dr Kalwinder said he was making the request on behalf of the Indian community as Sarawak is the only state in Malaysia where Deepavali is a public holiday.
This year, Deepavali will be celebrated on October 24.
The premier also said he will talk to state Tourism, Creative Industry and Performing Arts Minister Datuk Seri Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah to set aside a section in the newly completed Borneo Cultures Museum for the Sikh and Indian communities to showcase their culture.
“It is fair that we must have one section to showcase what the Indian and Sikh communities have done for Sarawak.
“All cultures (of communities in Sarawak) must be there,” he said, adding that they have done a lot for the state over the years.
Abang Johari said the state government will continue to allocate funds to religious bodies and houses of worship for their needs.
“This is the way we work together,” he said.
“I have one principle: If we help people, God will help us to increase our revenue so we can share it with the people,” he said.
KUALA LUMPUR, July 2 — After some tumultuous years, the Genting SkyWorlds theme park finally had its soft opening earlier this year. As crowds pour back into Genting though, as anyone who’s ever been to a theme park can tell you the rides may be great fun but waiting for it in line is not. Genting Skyworlds though claims to have a solution.
Together with Alibaba Cloud, they’ve developed the region’s first AI-powered ‘Virtual Queue’ system, baked right into the Genting Skyworlds app. Basically, once you’re at Genting Skyworlds, you can link your ticket to the app and “queue” up for rides by pre-booking your spot onto a ride you want to go for. The app will tell you exactly how long you’ll need to wait until the next open slot is available, and you can choose one of many time slots to get on the ride.
The ‘Virtual Queue’ system is baked right into the Genting Skyworlds app. — Picture via SoyaCincau
According to my colleague Fatin who used the app to “queue” up and book her spot on multiple rides, the experience was significantly better than having to queue up regularly. She adds that folks using the virtual queue solution had their own lane to the rides and had basically reserved their spot for the rides. It’s super simple to use once you’re at the theme park and allows you to maximise your time there by booking the rides you want to go on in advance and head over only when it’s your turn, rather than queueing up with everyone else.
“Thanks to this collaboration with Alibaba Cloud, Genting SkyWorlds is the first theme park in Southeast Asia to feature advanced VQ technology, enabling guests to skip the regular lines and choose what to do when they want.
With the VQ system integrated into our mobile app, guests will have access to some attractive features, including ability to reserve preferred rides, attractions and entertainment based on preferred time slots, create groups for multiple ticket holders, view recommended itineraries and receive real-time alerts for VQ reservations,” – Greg Pearn, VP and Head of Theme Park Operations, Resorts World Genting
If you’re planning your next family trip to Genting SkyWorlds, here’s how you can use their virtual queue solution to skip the queues. It’s also worth noting that some attractions can only be ridden on if you use the VQ feature on the app. First thing’s first, you got to buy your ticket of course, which you can do either over the counter or online. Then, create your profile in the Genting SkyWorlds app and link your ticket to it; we did so by scanning the QR code on the ticket with the app. You’ll also need to use the app to scan into the theme park.
Once you’re in, you can simply open the app’s home page which lets you see the entire theme park and its available rides. — Picture via SoyaCincau
Once you’re in, you can simply open the app’s home page which lets you see the entire theme park and its available rides. Each ride will have an approximate waiting time shown too. If you want to ride the Independence Day: Defiance ride for instance, you can just click on it and then tap on the ‘VQ Reserve Now’ button and choose a time slot that best fits your schedule. The best part is that you can actually choose a bunch of rides from the get go, and use the itinerary planner to keep track of what ride to go to, all without having to queue in line with everyone else.
WASHINGTON, July 2 — President Joe Biden predicted on Friday that some US states will try to arrest women for crossing state lines to get abortions after the Supreme Court overturned the constitutional right to the procedures nationwide.
Thirteen Republican-led states banned or severely restricted the procedure under so-called “trigger laws” after the court struck down the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling last week. Women in those states seeking an abortion may have to travel to states where it remains legal.
Convening a virtual meeting on abortion rights with Democratic state governors on Friday, Biden said he thinks “people are gonna be shocked when the first state ... tries to arrest a woman for crossing a state line to get health services.”
He added: “And I don’t think people believe that’s gonna happen. But it’s gonna happen, and it’s gonna telegraph to the whole country that this is a gigantic deal that goes beyond; I mean, it affects all your basic rights”.
Biden said the federal government will act to protect women who need to cross state lines to get an abortion and ensure their access to medication in states where it’s banned.
New Mexico’s governor, Michelle Lujan Grisham, told the meeting her state “will not cooperate” on any attempts to track down women who have had abortions to punish them. “We will not extradite,” she said.
Abortion rights groups have filed legislation in multiple states seeking to preserve the ability of women to terminate pregnancies.
Judges in Florida, Louisiana, Texas and Utah have since issued decisions preventing those states from enforcing new restrictive abortion laws, while Ohio’s top court on Friday declined to block the Republican-led state from enforcing an abortion ban.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul told the group that “just a handful of states” are going to have to take care of health of women across the country.
“There is such stress out there,” Hochul said. “It is a matter of life and death for American women,” she added.
Biden also told the group there were not enough votes in the Senate to scrap a supermajority rule known as the filibuster to codify Roe v. Wade’s protections into law.
He had proposed that senators remove the filibuster but the suggestion was shot down by aides to key Democratic lawmakers.
“(The) filibuster should not stand in the way of us being able to (codify Roe),” Biden said. — Reuters
TEHRAN, July 2 — At least five people were killed and 19 injured when a strong earthquake shook southern Iran early Saturday, the state news agency IRNA reported.
The 6.0 magnitude quake hit 100 kilometres (60 miles) southwest of the port city of Bandar Abbas in Hormozgan province, the US Geological Survey said. The quake struck just a minute after a 5.7 tremor.
Hormozgan governor Mahdi Dosti said the quakes killed five people and injured 19 others, IRNA reported.
Dosti said most of the damage occurred in the village of Sayeh Khost, close to the epicentre.
One person was killed in November last year when Hormozgan province was hit by twin 6.4 and 6.3 magnitude quakes.
Situated on the edge of several tectonic plates and crossing various fault lines, Iran is an area of strong seismic activity.
Iran’s deadliest quake was a 7.4-magnitude tremor that struck in 1990, killing 40,000 people in the north of the country. — AFP
PARIS, July 2 — Testimony to Karl Lagerfeld’s passion for both fashion and drawing, a collection of 180 sketches by the legendary designer will go under the hammer on July 6. Sketched in ink — sometimes together with markers, watercolours and, more surprisingly, makeup — the drawings will be sold by Sotheby’s in Paris during the forthcoming Haute Couture Week.
After disbanding the treasures of his various residences, Sotheby’s is starting a new chapter in the sale of the estate of Karl Lagerfeld, who died in February 2019. This time, collectors will have the chance to get their hands on some of the countless sketches made by the great designer throughout his career, reflecting his passion for fashion, and especially his talent. No less than 180 drawings, made by the former Chanel and Fendi creative director between the late 1960s and 2018, will be auctioned by Sotheby’s in Paris.
“This sale presents an unprecedented collection of Karl Lagerfeld’s fashion drawings from his apartments at 8 rue des Saints-Pères and 17 quai Voltaire. They uniquely retrace the history of fashion and taste as seen by one of its major players, driven by boundless inventivity and virtuosity,” explains Pierre Mothes, vice-president of Sotheby’s France.
Among the key lots in the sale is a set of 24 sketches dating from 1969, some of the earliest in the selection. The drawings are grouped together in a binder, alongside three press clippings from the same year, and collages made by the great designer showing some of his inspirations.
A compulsive and unparalleled sketcher, Karl Lagerfeld created all of these drawings in ink, although some of them feature motifs, silhouettes and other details made with markers, grease pencils, corrector fluid and, even more surprisingly, makeup. One such drawing of a dress, sketched with black and beige grease pencil and red-tinted makeup, is estimated to fetch €1,000 to €1,500 (RM4,600 to RM6,900).
The ‘KARL, Inspirations, Succession Karl Lagerfeld Part IV’ auction will be held in Paris on July 6, during Haute Couture Week. For more information, visit www.sothebys.com. — ETX Studio
NEW YORK, July 2 — If sun protection is essential when packing your suitcase for the big vacation getaway, it’s also wise to include moisturising products to combat the damaging effects of the sun. But forget cosmetics with lengthy formulas, as this year it’s all about focusing on natural ingredients with powerful nourishing properties. With shea butter, aloe vera and olive oil, you’ll be sure to have baby-soft skin when you step into fall.
In search of a more natural approach to beauty that’s less harmful to health, consumers are once again turning to the many ingredients emanating from Mother Nature’s riches. Here, it’s all about short formulas, as well as single-ingredient products, not to mention DIY cosmetics, which provide the total transparency sought by an increasingly demanding clientele. As the summer season begins, here are three natural ingredients with multiple virtues that can meet the needs of dry and dehydrated skin.
If you had to choose just one beauty essential for your vacation, then it should probably be shea butter. Not only does it nourish and moisturise dry skin, but it’s also an ideal ally in combating the sun’s harmful effects. It can even help prolong your tan. Make sure you get raw, unrefined shea butter to enjoy the best of its benefits.
Shea butter is a natural moisturiser that is suitable for all skin types and body parts (including hair). Rich in vitamins, including vitamin A, it deeply nourishes the skin, helps it regenerate and promotes elasticity. Indispensable all year round, shea butter is even more so in summer. Containing a natural latex, it can even prevent allergies to the sun and soothe irritated skin (itching, shaving rash, sun, insect bites) — all while prolonging your tan thanks to its many active ingredients.
In the fall of 2021, a study placed aloe vera at the top of the list of most sought-after skincare ingredients in no less than 37 countries around the world. This success is mainly due to the high moisturising power of the succulent plant, making it an indispensable skin ally all summer long. Thanks to its high concentration of water, aloe vera meets the various needs of skin that’s left dry and dehydrated by the sun, the pool or seawater.
Another plus point of aloe vera is that it doesn’t leave any kind of greasy film on the skin — which can be particularly welcome in hot weather. But the plant has other virtues too, whether for acne-prone skin, irritated and sensitive skin, or mature skin. It can, indeed, have a role to play in the fight against skin aging. It’s a natural moisturiser that adapts to almost all needs and skin types.
A must-have in the kitchen, olive oil is already known for its many health benefits. But this store cupboard staple is also good for the skin. Here, it’s not a question of slathering yourself in olive oil on the beaches this summer, but of using natural cosmetics based on this wonder ingredient or looking out for its many solid-product forms, including traditional olive oil soap.
Particularly rich in antioxidants, olive oil is celebrated for its moisturizing and nourishing properties, as well as its anti-aging and soothing qualities, calming irritated skin or skin prone to redness. These benefits have been recognised by almost all civilizations since the Antiquity. — ETX Studio
LONDON, July 2 ― The sight of the All England Club's manicured lawns proved irresistible for Venus Williams as the multiple Grand Slam champion made an unexpected ― and winning ― return after almost a year off court to play at Wimbledon yesterday.
The 42-year-old American, inspired by the sight of younger sister Serena earlier in the week, stepped back onto the court alongside Jamie Murray in the mixed doubles thanks to a wildcard entry and promptly booked a spot in the second round.
“I had no plan to play. I saw the grass and I got excited,” Williams said after she and her British partner secured a 6-3 6-7(7) 6-3 win over Alicja Rosolska and Michael Venus.
“I was at the French Open, it's a beautiful event, but my heart didn't beat the same way. Not that I could play but ... I had no plans. That's why I was asking (Murray) last minute.”
Murray is a two-time winner of the mixed doubles event at Wimbledon, but this is a title Williams has never claimed in her storied career.
In addition to her seven singles grand slam titles, Williams has won all four grand slam doubles titles ― including six at Wimbledon ― and the mixed doubles at the Australian and French Opens.
“It's one of the only ones I haven't won, so I usually put a little more priority here,” she said.
“It was definitely super last minute. Just inspired by Serena. Like I said, it was amazing. I just was so happy to have so much help today.”
Williams was playing for the first time since losing to Su-wei Hsieh in the first round of the Chicago Women's Open last August and recently posted training footage online.
But she remained coy about her plans beyond Wimbledon.
“You never know where I'll pop up,” she said. ― Reuters