P Ramakrishnan asks Najib what will happen to the poor until the next BR1M they receive. How do the poor carry on with their lives in the meantime?
Certainly remove wasteful subsidies, Abang Benet tells Idris Jala. But please ensure that the poor and the marginalised continue receiving subsidies; after all, why penalise them for the excesses of Umno/BN?
The poor often get a raw deal. Francis Loh observes they can be found within every ethnic group. Thus, he says, efforts to eradicate poverty should cater for all.
Now that the election is over, the dust from the many visits of VIPs never seen before will settle and business will return to as previously. But not quite, says Rani Rasiah, as the BN will now be pressured to fulfil its promises and show itself to be more pro-rakyat than the PR.
Mahathir Mohamad is back in the spotlight again; notably, he was the special guest at the right wing group Perkasa’s inaugural AGM in March. The man is obviously not one to fade way into the sunset and has once again re-invented himself to suit the era.
Is he a maverick, machiavellian or merely mainstream? That’s the question Maznah Mohamad poses in her review of Barry Wain’s book ‘Malaysian Maverick: Mahathir Mohamad in Turbulent Times’’. The book, which is still held back from distribution in Malaysia, is a sobering testament that Malaysians almost always do not get the government they deserve.
As Najib marks a hundred days in office as Prime Minister, the country is faced with political problems at a time of increasing economic difficulties, leaving the lower-income group most vulnerable. John Inbaraj writes an open plea to the PM, urging him to ensure that the poor can walk with dignity.
Dr Jeyakumar Devaraj has questioned the rationale behind the Supplementary Budget Estimate of RM18.7 billion and called on the Health Ministry to stop promoting health tourism during an intervention in Parliament yesterday. He has also called for the establishment of a fund to assist retrenched workers in servicing their housing loans if they are retrenched.
Imagine if all the toll collection over the years had gone to the Treasury, how many poor people could have been saved from poverty. It is high time that all the highways are renationalised and this too, as soon as possible. Please don’t ever think of privatising health care. Indeed, it is time to renationalise state assets and use the revenue for the people’s benefit, says K George.
After interviewing some Indian Malaysian families in an estate, in a low-cost housing area and in a longhouse within the outskirts of the Federal Territory, David Anthony was surprised – but not shocked – to find that their socio-financial situation has worsened over the years. Rights, he laments, remain written in the clouds never reaching the poor and helpless on the ground.
In another world, religion will not be a tool of exploitation in the hands of exploiters, but it will be a powerful weapon in the hands of the poor and the oppressed, says Asghar Ali Engineer.