MAHB to bear Pikas vaccination costs for staffers, union livid

MALAYSIA Airports Holdings Bhd’s (MAHB) employees will be receiving their COVID-19 vaccinations under the Public-Private Partnership COVID-19 Industry Immunisation Programme (PIKAS).

However, MAHB Workers’ Union (KESMA) was not too impressed on certain details of the programme.

In a statement to FocusM, MAHB said that airport frontliners will be receiving their vaccination at the KLIA Vaccination Centre (PPVKLIA) under the initiative, starting tomorrow.

“And it’s clearly stated under PIKAS that vaccination cost will be borne by the Government. However, there are some additional costs incurred in administering the vaccines, as well as in the set-up of the PPVKLIA which comes to RM 50 per person.

“But the cost will be borne by their respective employers. As for MAHB staffers, we made it clear that the company will bear all the cost for them,” it said.

MAHB added that more than 22,000 from the airport community will be involved in the programme, including staff from airliner companies, cargo companies and other service providers.

The company noted that its employees adhered to COVID-19 standard operating procedures (SOP) strictly at work and is supervised daily by its Occupational Health and Safety (OSH) teams.

“Staff members are also given daily reminders on safety measures. All employees, other than those required to be on duty at the airport, are fully working from home,” it remarked.

We’re frontliners yet ignored

Hussin Shahar

Commenting on MAHB’s participation in PIKAS, KESMA chairman Hussin Shahar questioned on why the company has to pay RM50 per person for the vaccination scheme.

“PIKAS or whatever, why must MAHB pay any charges for vaccination? In fact, we are also frontliners providing essential service to the country by manning our airports,” he told FocusM.

In light of volatile economic conditions, Hussin opined that the Government should provide additional help to MAHB so that the latter could keep itself financially viable to retain staff members.

“The vaccines should come at no cost. This will help our company to use its available resources to protect employees’ welfare,” he noted.

In general, the unionist said that MAHB staff members had to work around the clock as they are providing essential service but claimed they were still being sidestepped by the Government when it comes to the inoculation programme.

“Just two weeks ago, one of our cargo staff at KILA passed away due to COVID-19 as he has yet to get his vaccination. Another employee is now warded at the Seremban Hospital for the same virus.

“Despite being a Government-linked company, I’m not sure why the authorities are treating us like this,” Hussin lamented. – July 4, 2021.

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