Last Saturday, the Health Ministry held its first of a series of public forums to engage the people on Malaysian healthcare and to gather feedback on making healthcare equitable and accessible to all.
This was also to counter malicious allegations made by Pakatan Rakyat with regards to the 1Care idea that was leaked out by certain doctors who were engaged by the MOH to draft the concept paper.
At the forum, the Minister Liow Tiong Lai explained that public engagements were scheduled to be held at the end of the year but was brought forward as MOH needed to manage the misinformation being spread on the internet sphere .
This included an alleged 10% cut from all salaries to fund healthcare which the Minister labelled as nonsensical.
The crowd which numbered 200 also saw PKR President Wan Azizah, a vocal opponent of 1 Care. MOH officials offered her a reserved a seat at the front of the hall but she declined.
She had probably declined to be seated at the front as she did not come prepared with questions nor suggestions. She remained tight lipped throughout the forum.
For the record, the forum attracted a good 45 minutes of comments and questions from the public but Wan Azizah left without uttering a word.
Perhaps she was annoyed by a statement made by one of the speakers who called politicians a tribe that will politicise any issue just for votes.
Or perhaps she did not have any constructive facts to counter all the speakers who spoke about the need for reforms as our healthcare system lacks sustainability. Perhaps, her husband just forgot to pass her his typical political sound-bites.
Whatever the reason, it was clear that the public who attended failed to even notice her presence because of her non-interest.
Ironically when there is a platform, she chose to remain so silent in comparison to her and her cohorts making so much noise whenever there is nobody around to question them.
Hopefully she will come more prepared when MOH hold its second forum.