Federal Government Was Urged to Allow Political Parties and NGOs to Resume Delivery of Essential Aid

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DAP Kuching has submitted the first batch of the list of residents in need of food and aid assistance collected from Bandar Kuching, Stampin, Kota Samarahan and even Petra Jaya to the Welfare Department (Jabatan Kebajikan Masyarakat Negeri Sarawak) today.

Since morning we have been receiving non-stop calls from residents asking for help as they are badly affected by the situation now. Many of them claims that they have no food on the table, some daily paid workers and odd job workers have lost their source of income due to the Movement Control Order(MCO), some may not have proper transport to go out to buy food and also many others that are badly affected by the MCO and current virus pandemic.

However, due to the instruction from the Federal Government and the National Security Council(MKN), we and other NGOs are not allowed to distribute any food or aid to the poor and needy during this period. Aid can only be distributed through Jabatan Kebajikan Masyarakat(JKM) in each areas.

So, we have taken the effort to compile the list and submit it to the Welfare Department and hopefully the Welfare Department can provide the necessary assistance to those in need during this tough time.

We do hope that we can assist in any way as we also understand that the department may be already stretched in terms of manpower due to the crisis at hand.

That is why we do hope that the Federal Government can reconsider this directive so we can work hand in hand to help the poor affected by the MCO. We are not trying to supersede the government’s role in this crisis, but we want to complement them through this crisis to make sure that no one gets left behind.

Decentralising the delivery of the aid to the poor is to ensure that food and other essentials are delivered to those in need as soon as possible without going through various stages of the supply chain or even bureaucracy.

However we will continue to abide by the governments directive and hope that JKM will be able to cover the different needs in the community and to make sure no one gets left behind. We are glad and open to work together with JKM If ever they require our assistance as I believe we all play a part to take care of one another as we brace through this tough time together.