On 11 February, Ambassador Oka attended a virtual handover ceremony to provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) from the Government of Japan to The National Disaster Management Agency (NADMA) through Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
The Government of Japan is pleased to provide the Personal Protective Equipment which consists of -
• 7,600 units of Isolation Gown
• 7,600 units of Coverall
• 3,000 units of N95 mask; and
• 3,000 units of gloves.
These items will immediately be handed over to the front-liners such as The Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM), Malaysia Armed Forces (ATM), Civil Defence Force (APM) and the People's Volunteer Corps (RELA) who have worked vigorously and tirelessly, especially during the MCO period.
On the ceremony, Ambassador Oka had mentioned as follows.
1. It is a great honour and pleasure for me to attend today’s ceremony to hand over much needed assistance of PPE from the Government of Japan to NADMA through JICA. I sincerely hope that this assistance will be put to use soon to protect the officers and front liners who are working literally round the clock at the forefront of this fight against the global COVID-19 pandemic.
2. I would like to take this opportunity to express my profound appreciation and deep respect, on behalf of all the Japanese community residing in Malaysia, to the Government of Malaysia and NADMA under the leadership of Datuk Dr. Aminuddin in particular, for their dedicated efforts to keep us safe in Malaysia from the risk posed by COVID-19 virus.
3. NADMA is always at the center of the government’s efforts and responses to cope with disasters. It is still fresh in our memory that NADMA was spearheading the efforts of the government to help and mitigate the suffering of the people affected by the heavy monsoon rain and floods which have struck the country since last year, for which we pay our deep respect to NADMA.
4. The Government of Japan has provided in cooperation with the government of Malaysia various assistance to help Malaysians to cope with the unprecedented challenges posed by the COVID-19. For instance, we have provided emergency humanitarian assistance through international organizations in Malaysia to support the socially vulnerable group of people. I recently signed an Exchange of Notes with YB Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba, Minister of Health, for a grant assistance project to supply medical equipment from Japan to Malaysia.
5. The idea of providing PPE, I was told, came up during discussions between JICA and NADMA on measures to respond to the pandemic. Since then, it has been in a very short space of time that the idea has come to fruition today. I thank you, JICA, for advancing preparations and coordination in an expeditious manner so that the good will of the Japanese people can reach the Malaysian people in the form of the contribution of PPE in a timely manner.
6. Japan is prone to many types of natural disasters and has acquired rich experiences and expertise with regard to prediction, prevention and mitigation of natural disasters. JICA is well known for actively working to share such experiences and expertise globally to contribute to reducing the adverse effects of the disasters on the people everywhere in the world. In Malaysia, Japan and Malaysia have been enjoying excellent bilateral relations thanks to the long running Look East Policy which will celebrate its 40th anniversary next year. Under the Look East Policy, human and institutional capacity development through JICA has always been among the priority activities and disaster mitigation has been one of the main fields of cooperation. Today’s ceremony with NADMA symbolizes the extensive network JICA has cultivated through the years of activities in Malaysia.
7. Japan International Institute of Technology (MJIIT), which was established in 2011 as a faculty under UTM with the involvement of JICA, is another symbol of the cooperation between Malaysia and Japan under the Look East Policy. MJIIT offers the Master course for Disaster Risk Management (MDRM) to help develop future leaders in this field. Some of the officers in NADMA are graduates of this MDRM course. For example, Mr. Mohd Adzhar bin Mujab, currently a full time MDRM student, assisted in the setting up of several quarantine stations (QS) in Selangor and Melaka as an officer of NADMA before joining MDRM. I hope after his graduation from MDRM, he will one day become a leader in the field of disaster risk management.
8. MJIIT and JICA also plan to hold a webinar, “Responding and Preparing for Natural Hazards under the COVID-19 Pandemic: Sharing Challenges and Lessons from Malaysia and Japan” next month. I believe this webinar will further promote the co-learning or learning from each other relationship between Malaysian and Japanese scientists and policy practitioners in the fields of disaster risk management. This would significantly contribute to reduce and prevent disaster risks and to understand the ways to deal with the ongoing global pandemic as well.
9. In addition, the Government of Japan has adopted a JICA training program for NADMA, named “LEP2.0 Enhancement of the Disaster Risk Management Capacity of the National Disaster Management Agency (NADMA)”. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the training program in Japan in 2020 had to be postponed unfortunately, however we would like to invite NADMA officers to Japan for the training program once trainees are able to visit Japan.
10. Before I conclude, I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to Datuk once again for taking time out of your busy schedule to attend this online ceremony. I hope that the provision of PPE will be useful and beneficial for the government and the people of Malaysia. It is also my hope that we can develop further cooperation with NADMA in the field of disaster risk management as an important pillar of the cooperation between Malaysia and Japan for the benefits of our people.