JEDDAH (Bernama) – Malaysian profesionals in Saudi Arabia are well respected and sought after in Saudi Arabia for their professionalism, dedication and discipline.
Malaysian Consul-General to Saudi Arabia, Mohd Khalid Abbasi Abdul Razak said there were currently more than 1,000 Malaysian professionals working in the western zone of Saudi, spanning Tabuk in the north and Jizan in the south, including Makkah and Madinah.
The majority of them are health professionals, such as nurses, who are mainly attached to government hospitals and earning two to three times higher than what they would get in Malaysia, he told the Malaysian media after launching the Malaysia Day celebration at the counsulate on Friday night.
More than 400 Malaysians attended the function, including the Malaysia-Jeddah Bikers group, apart from 40 Malaysian students from Madinah University, who travelled about 400km to attend the event.
Besides singing Negaraku, a forum on ‘Penghayatan Kemerdekaan Dalam Kehidupan Setiap Insan’ (Appreciation of Liberty in the Life of every Human Being) was moderated by this year Haj’s religious manager for Makkah, Shahrul Azam Noorzeli and two panelists, Mohd Hishammuddin and Edeey Ameen from Tabung Haji.
Mohd Khalid said the service of Malaysian nurses was preferred by patients at hospitals here due to their tender and caring treatment, with many patients expressing satisfaction.
He said currently, many Malaysian professionals were involved in development projects in the country, that is, in the field of engineering, telecommunication and Islamic banking.
He said there were various benefits working here. Apart from higher salaries and wages, the income is not taxed.
Meanwhile, staff nurse Lalita Palaniappan, from Tapah, Perak who has been working at the King Abdulaziz Universiti Hospital here said there were currently about 200 Malaysian nurses working at the hospital.
The 35-year-old, who has been working in Malaysia and Singapore, said the only drawback here was the language since she did not speak Arabic, and the culture.
As for food, the nurses usually cooked their own food, she added.
For Zuriayati Zulkifly, 38, and Norsheilaiza Abdul Razak, 29, who arrived here about six months ago, they are coping well with the new environment despite the initial cultural shock.
Although they do not speak Arabic, they choose Saudi due to religious reasons and its Islamic environment.
Zuriayati previously worked at the Gleaneagles Hospital in Kuala Lumpur while Norsheilaiza was attached to the Ampang Puteri Hospital in Kuala Lumpur.