KUALA LUMPUR: The DAP’s P Ramasamy today asked why the Malaysian Indian Transformation Agency (Mitra) is distributing assistance for Indians in the B40 group through organisations, and not directly.
He claimed that more often than not, these organisations took a significant portion of the funds for payment of their own staff and other organisational expenses.
Ramasamy, who is also Penang deputy chief minister II, said the practice of channelling funds to the community indirectly through private organisations was done by the previous Barisan Nasional government.
Now, he said in a statement, the Pakatan Harapan government was doing the same.
”It is not wrong to give funds through private organisations as many of them are managed by honest and responsible individuals but this approach does not address the dire needs of the thousands of poor Indians who, through no fault of theirs, have no decent jobs as they are discriminated against in the public and private sectors,” he said.
He said lack of finance was obstructing the educational advancement of many Indians.
“Why can’t those responsible devise a system to directly assist these students? Why should funds be diverted to organisations that have no direct role in the welfare of Indian students?” he asked.
He also claimed that “hundreds if not thousands” of small-time Indian businessmen were hungry for startup funds as they had been shunned by banks and credit organisations because of their lack of experience.
These “poor Indian potential entrepreneurs” badly needed funds but Mitra had failed to do this, Ramasamy said.
He said Mitra was not allocating funds to Indian welfare homes, especially those for children.
”Hundreds of welfare homes taking care of abandoned children are in deep financial crises. Unfortunately, these homes may lack the glamour to attract attention from possible donors.
”More than six decades have elapsed since independence but, unfortunately, we have not come up with an effective method to assist the poor and the unfortunate directly,” he said.