MP calls for special cash payout to cope with Covid-19 restrictions

Subang MP Wong Chen.

PETALING JAYA: A PKR MP has urged the government to dish out a special payout under the Bantuan Sara Hidup (BSH) programme, following its unprecedented move last night to restrict public activities as part of measures to fight the Covid-19 spread.

Wong Chen, the MP for Subang, also called for an increase in the social safety net payments for the elderly, disabled and single parents.

He said officers should be deployed to ensure the poorest and most vulnerable, including migrant workers, were helped.

“An immediate discussion with representatives of employers should also commence.”

Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin last night announced a ban on public gatherings and events as well as the closure of schools, government offices and business premises from tomorrow until March 31.

Only essential services such as grocery stores, pharmacies, banking as well as utilities will remain open.

Wong said Putrajaya must now address the economic impact caused by the two-week shutdown of businesses.

He also criticised the move, saying there was a lack of data to justify the decision.

He said there were questions on the implication on workers, the poor and self employed, as well as those who have insufficient emergency savings.

“In times like this, the government must utilise its financial reserves to help everyone,” he added.

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