Cleaners, our unsung heroes on the COVID-19 frontline


ARAU – Apart from frontliners who have been tirelessly fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, the sacrifice of cleaning workers, the unsung heroes, should also be appreciated by the public.

Admittedly, not everyone is willing to take this job and do it daily, enduring foul smells and facing various risks of contracting infectious diseases, including the deadly coronavirus.

A cleaning worker attached to the northern region concessionaire, E-Idaman Sdn Bhd (EISB), Mohammad Fazli Mohammad Noh, 26, said that he never asked to be regarded as a hero, but simply doing his job diligently to ensure that people can live in a clean and comfortable environment.

“There is no doubt that we (cleaners) also face a high risk of being infected, but I will always comply with the standard operating procedures (SOPs) while at work, including maintaining personal hygiene.

“Before returning home, I will take a shower and clean myself first. I do not want to bring any diseases to my family,” he told Bernama..

The father of two said that he began his shift at 7 am and never felt embarrassed to clean up rubbish, as it provides him with a halal income to feed his family.

Sharing a similar sentiment, another worker, 31-year-old Muhamaad Raimi Rosidi said that the cleaners face the same risk of getting infected with COVID-19 as other frontliners.

“If compared in terms of workload and risk, of course, the challenges and sacrifices of frontliners are greater compared with us (cleaners),” he said.

Muhamaad Raimi, who has been working as a cleaner for six years, said that he would always comply with the SOPs by wearing gloves and face mask, and using hand sanitiser, as precautionary measures to face invisible enemies.

Meanwhile, EISB Corporate Communication head, Erni Nerina Awang Salleh, said that the concessionaire took maximum safety measures, following the SOPs set by the government, due to the spike in the number of reported COVID-19 cases.

“Among the safety measures taken are, workers are not allowed to touch the dustbins while collecting rubbish from house to house, and we have taught them proper personal hygiene after completing their work and before returning to their homes,” she said.

She hoped that the public would appreciate the sacrifice of the cleaners, regardless of whether they are unsung heroes or not, by giving cooperation in maintaining cleanliness and not discarding used face masks irresponsibly.