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Malaysian Ambassador Says PM Hun Sen and the Government Handled Covid-19 Perfectly

PHNOM PENH: The Malaysian Ambassador to Cambodia, Datuk Eldeen Husaini Mohd Hashim, has said that Prime Minister Hun Sen and the Royal Government of Cambodia have handled the Covid-19 pandemic perfectly, so if countries want to learn how to respond to such crises better, they should learn from Cambodia.

EAC News recently sat down for an exclusive interview with the Ambassador of Malaysia to get some of his thoughts on various topics related to Malaysia's relationship with Cambodia.

During the interview, the Malaysian Ambassador shared that he thought Prime Minister Hun Sen and the Cambodian government handled the Covid-19 pandemic perfectly, hence, other countries should learn and follow Cambodia’s stellar example.

From how the government initially addressed the viral outbreak, to how they formulated a complete action plan, implemented it with great success and rose awareness among the public, the Ambassador expressed that he was very impressed by Cambodia’s ability to quickly and effectively respond to this global health crisis.

“I've been saying this repeatedly, even to Malaysian officials, if you want to learn, learn from Cambodia," said Ambassador Eldeen Husaini Mohd Hashim.

"The Prime Minister and the government handled Covid-19 so perfectly in terms of how they addressed the issue and how they had a complete plan of action and then how they executed it. It was so wonderfully done. That's why you do not see any spike of Covid cases in Cambodia, because it has been controlled.”

On how information about the pandemic and health measures were disseminated to the public, he said, “I think [raising] awareness to the public was done very quickly. The instructions [given] to the public were clear, and then the way that [the government] implemented prevention, like through offering masks for free. Simple things like that, offering masks for free was [something done earliest by] Cambodia. [While] the rest [of the world] was thinking, how do we do this? Do we sell masks, do we do masks [at all]? Cambodians [were saying] no, masks are free.”

“Then of course [there is] prevention and control and how you prevent people [from catching the virus] and raise awareness with the people, [which is] especially difficult [among] villagers, people who do not know and understand. How Cambodia did it was so beautiful because they [disseminated] not only through media, not only through television, but also through radio. And that is something that we need to learn, to [use apps like] WhatsApp to [speak directly to the people]."

"What we learned is the Prime Minister, Samdech Techo, [will] record his message and everybody will listen, either [through the] radio, or everybody will just share through their phones, so everyone will hear what the Prime Minister has to say.”

Speaking further on the administration of vaccines, the Ambassador remarked that, “Cambodia was among the first to receive vaccines and give vaccinations, including for foreigners. I think Cambodia is one of the countries who gave priority to foreigners as well.”

“The Embassies were all given full jabs, then [other] foreigners [as well], so nobody was left behind. I think that was something that we needed to learn from Cambodia. How you control, how you create awareness and disseminate information and how you give to the people. I think that's wonderful. That's why I said you have to learn from Cambodia.”

Stay tuned for the release of the full in-depth interview with the Malaysian Ambassador, here at EAC News.

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