Not much to celebrate for some this Labour Day

MIRI: Labour Day, which falls tomorrow, takes on a different meaning for many this year under the Movement Control Order (MCO), as the Covid-19 pandemic continues to threaten the world.

For senior operations executive and tourist guide Putra Drus, the pandemic has changed the tourism industry for the long term.

“I acknowledge that the day is to recognise the contribution of workers worldwide and this year there isn’t much to celebrate about, especially for those with no work due to Covid-19.

“For me, I am not getting any income right now and we have discussed the matter with the management. Therefore we came up with other businesses through online selling health products such as face masks, hand sanitiser, disinfection spray, and that is the only income that we have. If there are no sales, then there is no income,” he told The Borneo Post on Tuesday.

Putra, who has over 10 years’ experience in the tourism industry, said it will take time for the sector to recover.

“Until today I keep on asking myself what is next because the tourism industry is badly affected and the country is already losing billions of ringgit. I have been in the industry for years and changing to another job is not an option.

“I just hope the government will come up with practical ideas to help us out in these challenging times because it will take a really long time for tourism to recover,” he said.

Sofina Tan, who ran a food stall prior to the MCO, said all traders are now forced to work extra hard to make ends meet.

“I think it is appropriate that we give attention to the frontliners, who sacrificed their time, energy, and health to serve others.

“While there is no mass celebration to celebrate Labour Day this time, it does not mean that we should forget about the underlying issues or messages that we want to bring through the Labour Day celebration.

“I will still be working on May 1 to deliver all the food orders myself as my stall at a food court in Pujut here is closed. I update the food menu via my Instagram, Facebook, and WhatsApp status for the customers to order. I will continue with the delivery method until the MCO is lifted and we just need to work extra hard this time of year,” she said.

Sofina added she prefers online payments and will usually place ordered food on customers’ gates for contactless delivery.

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