KUALA LUMPUR DEC.8: The government has realised the hardships suffered by the people in the rural areas and cities due to COVID-19 pandemic and as such focus will be given to increase the people’s prosperity and to address the problems of the rural and city poor.
Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said, in a study conducted by UNICEF in October 2020, it is found that the rate of adult unemployment in the community is still high that is 35% and the rate of poverty is higher than last year and poverty exists in each of every two households.
“The study was related to the urban poor and the prosperity of the people affecting 500 families and involving 16 areas in the People’s Housing Project (PPR) Kuala Lumpur,” said Muhyiddin answering the question from Dato’ Seri Ahmad Faizal Dato’ Azumu (Tambun) at Dewan Rakyat today.
The Member of Parliament (MP) from Tambun asked whether the government has identified the category that falls abruptly into the poor and hard core poor people as a result of the Movement Control Order (MCO) and what is the system used to help these categories.
Muhyiddin added, COVID-19 has also caused the rate of unemployment and the number of poor households to be on the increasing trend.
“Until 3rd Dec. 2020, 101,385 people had lost their jobs and claimed their insurance and this is higher by 40,000 compared in 2019 and 24,000 in 2018.
“From that number, 52% are with the monthly salary of RM2, 000 and below and are in the poor and hard core poor category,” said the Prime Minister.
In another development, Muhyiddin said, the World Bank has estimated an additional of 88 million to 115 million people will be in the category of hard core poor in the world in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Relating to the increasing number of hard core poor people due to COVID-19 pandemic, the government is monitoring the poverty situation among the people through the eKasih system that will be improved.
The Prime Minister added, the government has and is making efforts to recover the economy and social aspects that affect the balance between economic requirements, social and the people’s health that have been categorised as poor.
Muhyiddin said, among the efforts is providing RM2.2 billion for the Federal Financial Monthly Assistance for the year 2021 compared to RM1.5 billion this year and this is for the handicapped and other groups.
“The government has continued the Cost of Living Assistance Programme that has benefitted 4.5 million recipients with RM5 billion allocation in 2020. As a caring government, two National Caring Assistance (BPN) had been introduced under the Economic Stimulus PRIHATIN, We PRIHATIN amounting to RM18.2 billion. Until now 10.6 million people had benefitted from BPN and 9.86 million from BPN 2.0,” Muhyiddin reiterated.
Muhyiddin who is also the MP of Pagoh said, on 2nd September 2020, the government has formed the Special Cabinet Committee Addressing Poverty to discuss the policies and strategies to eradicate poverty.
He added, this includes the roles of ministries and agencies involved to ensure the needy groups received assistance and they will not escape from the social safety nets.-Malaysia World News