Do not viralise pictures, videos of major floods in the past – Saifuddin
KUANTAN, Jan 4 — Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah today advised the public not to viralise or share the pictures or videos of major floods that occurred in the past when several states are braving floods this monsoon season.
He said the act of spreading pictures and videos of past floods, such as the major floods in 2014, could cause panic among the public, especially those living far from their hometown.
“I do hope that the public could take time to verify the pictures or videos that went viral on social media before sharing it with others. The act of viralising such pictures and videos can also be considered as spreading fake news.
“Although we can take action against those who spread fake news, we still hope that the public will be more responsible because, at the time like this, the police surely have more important work to do.”
The minister said this to Bernama after visiting the flood evacuation centre at Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan (SMK) Pelindung which housed 20 families from three villages namely Kampung Bugis, Kampung Pelindung Pantai and Kampung Pasir Garam.
Saifuddin said the public could also check on the authenticity of the flood-related information they received with the relevant authorities which have been trying their level best to provide accurate real-time information.
“For the latest development of the flood situation, the public can check with the nearest flood operations centre or police station. Twitter and Facebook pages of road/highway concessionaires’ are always updated with the latest information and the public can also call their hotline numbers,” he said.
Meanwhile, Saifuddin, who is also Indera Mahkota Member of Parliament, said he had asked the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) to monitor the telecommunication system as it is the most important medium of communications, especially during this monsoon season.
On the flood situation in Indera Mahkota, Saifuddin said 2,000 flood evacuees are currently housed at seven evacuation centres in the constituency since yesterday.
“I hope they will be patient and wait for the flood to completely subside before returning home,” he said.
He also expressed hope that non-governmental organisations wishing to send aid to the evacuees to contact the operations room as visits to the evacuation centres were not advised amid COVID-19.