By Lian Cheng
KUCHING, June 9: As many as 22,224 hawkers and petty traders have applied for Bantuan Khas Sarawakku Sayang (BKSS) financial assistance especially allocated for them after the application closed on May 31, 2020.
According to Local Government and Housing Minister Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian, as many as 6,025 hawkers and petty traders had successful applied for it while 2,805 had successful received the payment before June 8.
The total amount paid out by the Sarawak government for these 2,805 recipients amounted to RM2.1 million.
Dr Sim said an additional 3,220 successful applicants will receive payment after June 8, 2020. This will cost the Sarawak government another RM2.4 million.
Dr Sim who is also Batu Kawa assemblyman said the rest of applications are still being processed including verification by local councils.
“Those who have registered themselves with Sarawak Pay will find payment been paid directly into their Sarawak Pay account,” Dr Sim told DayakDaily.
On April 18, Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg announced that under BKSS 2.0, RM1,500 would be given to each hawker and petty trader where payment would be made through two instalments.
On May 11, when Abang Johari announced BKSS 3.0, he added an additional RM750 for hawkers and petty traders.
Hawkers and petty traders have been adversely impacted by Covid-19 as they were not allowed to operate during Movement Control Order (MCO) and the extended Conditional MCO.
Dr Sim pointed out that following each hawker receiving RM2,250, it would cost the Sarawak government RM146 million in total.
“With this payment, I hope it will help mitigate the financial losses experienced by hawkers and petty traders during MCO and CMCO,” said Dr Sim on his social media page today.
Meanwhile, he said following recovery MCO (RMCO) which will be implemented from June 10 to Aug 31, those who have not registered with Sarawak Pay will be paid soon following verification.
He also stressed that Sarawak government’s BKSS assistance for hawkers and petty traders is over and above the financial assistance provided by the federal government. — DayakDaily