KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 4 — As the country continues to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic that has badly affected Malaysians’ lives, the government has been urged to provide more allocations in Budget 2021 to help the people.
Universiti Sains Malaysia Social Science School lecturer Prof Dr Sivamurugan Pandian said the budget needs to focus on the people’s welfare, especially various target groups.
“The tabling of the budget this time needs to ensure the people’s well-being remains the focus.
“Various issues, including youth unemployment, poverty, job opportunity, small and medium industries that are affected by the Covid-19 pandemic need to be prioritised,” he told Bernama today.
He said elderly women and the disabled also should not be neglected.
Sivamurugan said that special aid should be created for those in need, including students, especially those from low-income families.
The special aid could be given in the form of subsidies, fee reductions, and educational loan deferments, he said.
“There are so many students affected, so we hope that there will be continuous special aid for this group.
“When the families of students lose their jobs or have their salaries cut, it causes problems so we do not want students to also be burdened because they require adequate funds to continue their studies,” he added.
Budget 2021 will be tabled on Friday.
Meanwhile, Gerakan president Datuk Dr Dominic Lau Hoe Chai said that funds for the country’s development should suit the current needs and take into consideration public interests, especially the fight against Covid-19.
He said health, education, finance, unemployment and security were among the areas of concern that should be addressed in the Budget.
“Budget 2021 is very significant to our economic recovery and the government, through previous stimulus packages, have channelled various recovery incentives to the public to stabilise our economy,” he said at a media conference today.
He also urged all MPs to support the Budget because without allocations, the government cannot continue its efforts to revitalise the economy and safeguard public welfare.
“I think enough is enough, everybody needs to be focused on supporting the budget and approving it. To help the rakyat is more important than anything else. Whatever they (government) table is good for the rakyat, so we should support,” he said.