JAKARTA:Education Malaysia (EM) in Indonesia have supplied face masks and basic medicines to Malaysian students in North Sumatra
following the eruptions of Gunung Sinabung, which is reported to be worsening.
Indonesia EM officer Kamarulazhar Abdul Salim said the 1,173 Malaysian students were reported safe, to date, and more than half had returned to Malaysia for the festive season holiday.
He said only 30 per cent of Malaysian students, who were studying medicine, were undergoing their practical trainings at several government hospitals in North Sumatra and they were reported to be safe and healthy.
He said according to the latest report, volcanic ash had now spread to Medan and its surrounding areas.
“The Serdang area where Malaysian students at Universitas Islam Negeri Sumatera Utara (UINSU) and Universitas Negeri Medan (UNIMED) are staying has unhealthy air due to volcanic ash,” he said when contacted here, today.
Kamarulazhar said EM was always in contact with the president of the Medan branch of the Malaysian Students National Association in Indonesia (PKPMI), Natasha As-Sakinah to find out about the Malaysian students in Medan.
He said the volcanic ash in the Malaysian students’ emplacement at Universitas Sumatera Utara (USU) was reported to be less serious compared to in Serdang.
“Only a small number of the students are experiencing coughs and ill-health due to the heat and ash but EM has urged them to take security precaution and take care of their health,” he said.
He said EM had also increased emergency kits by 300 units for the use of Malaysian students which was channelled via PKPMI Medan Branch.
The eruption of Gunung Sinabung was reported since last month and was becoming more serious and ejecting increasing thick hot volcanic ash.
According to a report from the National Agency for Disaster Management, of Indonesia the eruptions of the volcano were still at the danger warning stage and volcanic activities had not abated.
According to reports by local media, 7,000 residents staying around seven kilometres from the volcano had been moved to shelters.
Meanwhile, Malaysian ambassador to Malaysia Datuk Seri Zahrain Mohamed Hashim said the students’ parents in Malaysia needed not worry about the conditions of their children as the embassy was always monitoring the situation.
“We have an emergency plan if anything happens due to the volcanic activities and all our officers are ready to face any eventuality to assure the safety of the Malaysian students in Indonesia,” he said.
He said, to date, all the Malaysian students were safe and those undergoing practical training at government hospitals were still continuing their daily tasks as usual.- BERNAMA