KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 28 2017 : The 2018 Budget was described as very special as it showed the government’s concern for the needs of senior citizens, people with disabilities (PWDs) and asnaf (less fortunate) children.
Malaysian Welfare Centre Council president Datuk Mastikah Junaidah Husin said that many issues raised such as those relating to rising cost of living were taken into account as the government has allocated allowances for the underprivileged and it showed the government’s concern even in small matters.
“Allowances provided are very much needed and can ease the burden of these groups, and we are grateful for the welfare of the elderly that have been addressed,” she told Bernama.
During the tabling of 2018 Budget, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced the RM50 increase of senior citizens’ allowances to RM350 a month that would benefit about 144,000 seniors with a total allocation of RM603 million.
The government also announced RM50 increase of monthly allowance for both employed and unemployed PWDs individuals as well as their caretakers involving RM100 million allocation and another RM245 million allocation for children from poor families.
Meanwhile, Malaysian Golden Age Welfare Association (Usiamas) president Datuk Dr Abdullah Malim Baginda said the government kept its promise not to neglect the underprivileged especially senior citizens on the budget announcement this time.
“It is a good news, but I hope the future allowances such as social pension can be given to all senior citizens aged 60 years and above regardless of their background as a tribute to their contribution to the nation’s development,” he said.
Association of Women with Disabilities president Senator Bathmavathi Krishnan said the budget was very positive and inclusive that it also prioritised disabled people.
Apart from allowances, this budget is also inclusive as the provision of the National Entrepreneurial Group Economic Fund (Tekun) and the cost reduction to obtain foreign domestic helpers are also provided for the PWDs. – Bernama