Since the Covid-19 pandemic started in Malaysia, we have been receiving text messages (SMS) from the National Security Council (MKN) or the Health Ministry (KKM) on the updates of the SOPs.
However, after we’ve managed to keep the Covid-19 spread contained and gradually returning to our normal lives, we are still getting text messages from the government.
The text messages from the government these days are pretty much not related to the important SOPs that are required to be communicated to the people urgently.
On Wednesday (8 December), the Ledang Member of Parliament (MP) Syed Ibrahim Syed Noh had took to the Parliament to question the government’s motive for blasting these text messages to the people
He added that certain messages have political agendas and the costs for these messages would be an unreasonable expenditure.
“Many members of the public and myself see that we, quite often, receive these SMS Blasts that come from, sometimes their code is MKN, sometimes it’s MCMC, code KKMM and the latest is GOV.”
“I would like to ask, if for example, these messages are messages that are important, like when Covid-19 first broke out we received messages about the Covid-19 situation, about certain restrictions, I don’t see a problem in that. We support it.”
“But I see, when it includes messages that are strong in propaganda, the latest example would be the ‘three values of cabinet ministers’. What is the use of this to the people?” he asked.
Ibrahim then share that the purpose of the “SMS Blast” is to share factual information with the public and asked the government to disclose the costs that were spent on sending out these SMS Blasts.
“And please do clarify if this approach has any benefits and good impact on the people, as I am worried that the cost is high, especially when, for example we change the SMS Blast code number to MKN, GOV, KKMM and so forth. This has costs, there is value to it. So when it is sent to millions of people, that is a cost that is very high and concerning.” he said.
Nonetheless, it does seems that the text messages from the government we are receiving today seems a bit extra. For example, there’s regular messages to remind people to wash and sanitise their hands, but these should already be the common practice.
What do you think about the text messages you are receiving these days? Share your thoughts!