Chong wants transparency on RM200,000 food aid allocation

Chong Chieng Jen

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KUCHING, Apr 17: DAP Sarawak chairman Chong Chieng Jen has urged the state government to be transparent and come clean on the RM200,000 allocation for each state constituency to help the poor families with food items.

He claimed that the allocation meant for DAP state assembly (DUN) areas were withheld by the state government and instead, required the DAP elected representatives to submit names, addresses and contacts numbers of those families who needed food assistance to the Welfare Department for them to manage the food distribution.

While they have followed the instruction to submit the list of applicants to the Welfare Department, Chong, however, said upon contacting the applicants days later, they discovered the food aid had not been delivered to most of them.

“When we confronted the Welfare Department on this, we were informed that less than 20 per cent of those applicants whom we have submitted their particulars were approved,” he said in a press statement issued today.

“When we pressed further for an answer, the Welfare Department told us that as at April 13, they have distributed food to 875 families in Padungan area, 738 families in Pending area, 3,612 families in Batu Lintang area and 1,675 families in Kota Sentosa area,” he added.

Chong, who is Kota Sentosa assemblyman, said the Welfare Department, however, refused to disclose the list of recipients who have received the food aid.

He insisted that for the last two weeks going to the ground to distribute food, many recipients have said they did not receive anything from the Welfare Department.

Chong questioned who had the Welfare Department given the food to if so many of these cases had not received food assistance from them yet.

“How is the RM200,000 allocation each for Padungan, Pending, Batu Lintang and Kota Sentosa spent? Why is there such a need for secrecy on who are the recipients?

“Why is the ministry refusing to adopt a more transparent and less partisan approach for co-operation during this time of national and international crisis?” he asked.

While DAP Sarawak supported for more allocation for the poor and the economy at this critical time, Chong, however, reminded that such allocation should be maximised the help for the people, not to line the pockets of some connected ones. —DayakDaily