Have a heart for the poor, Guan Eng appeals to MySalam critics

Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng.

PUTRAJAYA: Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng today called on critics of the MySalam health protection scheme to look at it from a humanitarian viewpoint, and not from the “perspective of statistics and numbers”.

“For those who say that the RM2 billion can be used for other purposes, have a heart for those who face hardship.”

Critics should think of the poor people who fall ill and their plight, he said at a press conference to announce the new website for the scheme.

The website, www.mysalam.com.my, has been launched for all eligible Malaysians to register and make their claims online.

Lim was responding to the criticism that the RM2 billion contributed by Great Eastern Life should be used to boost the public healthcare system.

The finance minister also dismissed Parti Sosialis Malaysia’s (PSM) claim that the scheme was only protecting one big company’s interests.

“I do not want to reply to this politically motivated claim,” he said.

Earlier reports said that private insurance firm Great Eastern Life had contributed RM2 billion to the fund.

The eligible candidates will get some health protection for free for 36 critical illnesses which include cancer, heart attack and Alzheimer’s disease.

The recipient will get an assistance of RM8,000 and a daily payment of RM50 (Max RM 700 a year) as replacement income.

Some 3.7 million Malaysians between the ages of 18 and 55 stand to benefit from this scheme.

Lim also clarified that beneficiaries will be customers of the Malaysian government, and not of Great Eastern as speculated by many.

“They are not the customers of Great Eastern. They are Malaysian citizens, where we give them this insurance coverage free of charge,” he said.

Lim, who is also DAP secretary-general, added that information shared with Great Eastern would be subject to the Personal Data Protection Act.