PUTRAJAYA, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today urged all parties to collectively mobilise efforts to ensure poverty is truly eradicated and not burdened on the government.

This includes non-governmental organisations (NGOs), high-profile figures, government-linked companies (GLCs) and business entities, said Zahid, who is also the Minister of Rural and Regional Development.

‘The role of eradicating poverty should not only be on the government, we all are responsible for working together to achieve it.

‘The vulnerable and fragile B40 group that needs assistance must be helped so that they can break free from the shackles of poverty, especially since this group is at risk of facing emotional and mental pressures,” he said in his opening speech at the ‘Eradicating Poverty: The Role of the Third Sector’ Congress here today.

His speech text was read out by his political secretary for the Rural and Regional Development Ministry (KKDW), Datuk Mohd Razlan Muhamad Rafii.

Quoting the ‘Ihsan’ (compassion) value in the concept of Malaysia MADANI, Ahmad Zahid said that the implementation of the People’s Income Initiative (IPR) had an impact on reducing the number of hardcore poor households to 18,000 families, as announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim during the presentation of Budget 2024 on Oct 13.

The government has also introduced various incentives, including the Sumbangan Tunai Rahmah (STR), Sumbangan Asas Rahmah (SARA) and subsidies for padi farmers and smallholders, he said.

As for KKDW, Ahmad Zahid said he had proposed that the national cooperative movement move cohesively through the formation of a grouping or federation to enhance the economy and welfare of the people.

It is now the third contributor to the country’s economy after the government and private sectors, with a membership of 7.3 million and accumulated share capital and fees of RM16.5 billion, he said.

On July 30, Ahmad Zahid called on the cooperative movement in Malaysia to move cohesively to help the government eradicate hardcore poverty and hoped that it would be seriously involved in helping the government’s efforts to reduce the prices of necessities such as sugar, flour and cooking oil.

The congress organised by Yayasan Basmi Kemiskinan (YBK) and Benevolent Malaysia in collaboration with the Institute for Poverty Research and Management, Universiti Malaysia Kelantan and Universiti Tenaga Nasional presented the resolution, ‘The Role of the Third Sector in Eradicating Poverty in Malaysia’.

The resolution, among other things, recommends strengthening the role of the third sector such as NGOs, GLCs and individuals to jointly form networks at the local and international levels in eradicating poverty.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency