Kuala Lumpur: Putra 1Malaysia Club urged Malaysians to donate food and essentials to some 200,000 Rohingya refugees who are staying in camps in Bangladesh and near the Thai-Myanmar border. Its president, Datuk Abdul Azeez Rahim, said the club's mission was to collect 480 tonnes worth of food, toiletries and medicine for the refugees. "We hope to provide six months' worth of food to them." Azeez said the club has collaborated with hypermarket chains Giant and Mydin to provide avenues for charitable Malaysians to make their contributions. "Members of the public can just go to Giant or Mydin and buy a family tag worth RM100 that would include a box full of food and toiletries. "Each box would have the name of the person who donates this." Azeez also welcomed Rohingya and Bangladeshi communities in Malaysia who wanted to volunteer with the club and pack the donations into individual boxes for the mission.
International human rights organisation Amnesty International described the Rohingyas as one of the most oppressed minorities in the world. The Rohingya Muslims have suffered under the junta since 1978 and were restricted from becoming Myanmar citizens. The club's 60 volunteers will head for Bangladesh on Aug 31 and are expected to return on Sept 9 after transporting the humanitarian aid to volunteers at Kutupalons and Mayapara, 120km from Chittagong, Bangladesh. Azeez said the team would work with local non-governmental organisations and the International Red Crescent Society there. He added the club had upgraded its security features during humanitarian missions, such as providing bulletproof vests to its volunteers to avoid any unwanted incidents. Those interested to donate can contribute blankets, mineral water, medication, baby milk formula and food and send them to the club's headquarters at 66 Jalan Kampung Attap, 50460 Kuala Lumpur before Aug 31.The public can also call 1-300-88-1113 or 014-5181818 (Azeez) for more details.