Help our friends in Bosnia

17 Jun 2014 / 18:01 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: Berjaya Group founder Tan Sri Vincent Tan has called on Malaysians to once again rise to the occasion and provide help to Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the aftermath of the severe flooding there.
“The floods have caused a lot of damage there. Hundreds of thousands of people have become homeless due to the floods,” Tan said when presenting his personal donation of RM500,000 towards the cause.
A mock cheque for his donation was presented to Bosnia and Herzegovina Ambassador to Malaysia Tarik Bukvic, who received it on behalf of theSun-Mercy Malaysia Bosnia Flood Disaster Relief Fund. Present to witness the presentation were Sun Media Corporation managing director Chan Kien Sing and theSun managing editor Freddie Ng.
Tan had been the first to pledge his personal donation of half a million ringgit when theSun launched the fund a week after the floods inundated more than a quarter of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Noting that theSun had raised over RM1 million in aid of Mercy Malaysia’s relief work in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan in Philippines last year, Tan hoped Malaysians would once again be charitable and extend aid to the suffering victims of the floods in Bosnia.
“Bosnia is no stranger to Malaysians as we have established a close friendship with the country when it was at war in the 1990s, during the tenure of former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad ” said Tan, who has visited the country twice.
“Besides larger donations from body corporates, I hope individuals will also come forward to donate, even in smaller sums like RM50 or RM100 to help the flood victims.”
Meanwhile, in thanking Tan for his generosity and unwaning support for his country, Bukvic said Malaysia had indeed been a good friend of Bosnia despite the physical distance between the two nations.
“Malaysia has been there for us when we were ravaged by the war and once again Malaysia has proven its friendship to us,” said Bukvic, who explained that the recovery for his nation will be in two phases.
“Phase one is to ensure that priority needs like fresh water, food and medical assistance are provided while the second phase will be the reconstruction phase as more than 500,000 homes have been damaged by the floods, and to help thousands who have lost their jobs and livelihood recover,” Bukvic said.
Bukvic said one good thing about the natural disaster was that it has helped to unite the three major ethnics – Bosniaks who are Muslims and Serbians and Croatians, who are Christians.
“The other unifying factor for the various communities is football, as Bosnia is playing in the World Cup,” he added.

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