People first before politics, says Fatimah

Dato Sri Fatimah Abdullah

KUCHING, May 25: Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah says welfare should come before politics.

She believed that regardless of which parties or coalitions are the government of the day, welfare should always take precedence.

“When people are concerned, welfare should come first and politics later,” Fatimah told DayakDaily today.

She said at the moment, there has yet to be an official notification with regards to the Pakatan Rakyat federal government’s policy on welfare.

“Just wait and let us see how things are. Definitely, we (state and federal governments) will work together for the common benefit of the people whom we are entrusted,” said Fatimah.

She said the handover of the Welfare Ministry was only carried out yesterday and she was willing to give time for the new Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail to be familiarised with the ministry.

“Let her settle down first and be familiarised with the ministry. From there, we can work together.

“One of the things that I am going to do is to pay her a courtesy call. We have common interests in welfare, women and children. We will see how we can work together,” said Fatimah.

She said presently, it was too early to say that if the federal government was going to withdraw welfare aid and other related financial allocations to Sarawak.

For March alone, the number of Sarawakians receiving monthly welfare aid was 56,464 Sarawakians.

The state government was taken surprised by the decision of federal Rural and Regional Development Ministry to temporarily postpone all administrative matters including payments of allowances and other related matters concerning the Village Security and Development Committees (JKKK) and their federal counterparts JKKKPs.

While the state government is taking over this responsibility, there are concerns that the federal government might also decide to stop welfare aid and other financial assistance which according to former practice, both state and federal governments share the responsibility. — DayakDaily