Participants of the National Journalists' Day (HAWANA) 2023 Media Hunt today have a challenging drive racing against time to complete a selected route from Wisma Bernama in Kuala Lumpur to Mydin Mall Meru, here.

A team of the Malaysian National News Agency (Bernama) comprising Ahmad Syabil Sultan Noordin Ahmad and four other team members were the first group to reach the final location at Mydin Mall Meru at 3.50 pm after departing at 7.30 am this morning.

"Never have we ever have to watch time so closely as there is a deadline for each location but our teamwork took us through to reach the last location successfully.

"We were given a map to follow and the road was quite bad and it was a great test for the driver while the other members endure the bumpy ride," he said when met here today.

Meanwhile, Free Malaysia Today reporter Nora Mahpar said one of her team members who could not take the dizzy journey vomited.

"Time is always running out as we figure how to get to the designated location within the designated time while finding answers to a list of question provided by the secretariat.

"I hope this exhilarating activity will continue in next year's HAWANA programme, but it needs to be improved in terms of location for the safety of the participants. For example, it could be held at the Taiping Zoo and activities are carried out in that location," she said.

A journalist of The Malaysian Insight, Syazwana Amir described Media Hunt HAWANA 2023 as an activity that can strengthen the camaraderie of media practitioners from various organisations.

"When you get to a certain location you will meet media friends from other organisations, as well as new faces in the media to widen your contacts," she said.

Earlier, a total of 30 vehicles with 120 HAWANA 2023 Media Hunt participants were flagged off by Deputy Communications and Digital Minister Teo Nie Ching as they wind their way through interesting, historic and heritage destinations in Perak.

There are prizes for the top 10 groups with the first place winners receiving RM4,000 cash, the second place (RM2,500) and third (RM1,500) while the prize presentation will take place tomorrow.

The three-day HAWANA 2023 celebration themed 'Free Media, Pillar of Democracy' began today and the highlight will be the opening by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim tomorrow.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency