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By Lian Cheng
KUCHING, June 4: Sarawakians are entitled to all financial aid including Wage Subsidy Programme under 2021 Permai Pemerkasa Plus (Pemerkasa+) just announced by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
Under Pemerkasa+, tourism and retail related companies are eligible for the seven-month wage subsidy while companies dealing with other businesses, two months.
Those who had already tried to apply for any form of aid under the package will have to wait a little longer as the federal government has yet to open for applications online.
Like many other private companies in Sarawak, DayakDaily owned by Sage Salute Sdn Bhd tried yesterday to apply online for Wage Subsidy Programme on Social Security Organisation (Socso) website. The effort was in vain as applicants were told that Sarawak was not eligible.
What popped up on the screen was “Harap maaf, permohonan anda tidak diterima kerana hanya negeri yang terlibat dengan pkp sahaja layak untuk memohon” (We are sorry that your application has not been accepted because only states which are under MCO are eligible to apply).
An accountant of a group of companies and an owner of a private company also called up DayakDaily and raised the questions if Sarawakians were eligible for Pemerkasa+ and whether there was still “Satu Malaysia”.
To clear the confusion, DayakDaily contacted Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives Minister Dato Sri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar who came back with an assurance that Sarawakians are eligible.
“I was informed by the Finance Ministry that Sarawakians are eligible for all the financial aid packages under Permai Permerkasa Plus,” he said.
On the “We are sorry” message received by many Sarawakian applicants of Wage Subsidy Programme, DayakDaily received a late night message from Wan Junaidi quoting Socso CEO Datuk Seri Dr Mohammed Azman Aziz Mohammed that Sarawakian companies are definitely eligible for it.
Wan Junaidi said Mohd Azman apologised for the confusion that happened in the implementation of the Wage Subsidy and clarified that all companies in Sarawak are eligible for the wage subsidy under 2021 Permai Pemerkasa Plus package this year.
According to Wan Junaidi, Mohd Azman explained that the confusion had risen because under the previous 2021 Permai Pemerkasa package of MCO 2.0 in January, Sarawak was not part of it as the State did not declare MCO.
Wan Junaidi said as Sarawak joined the federal government in the latest MCO 3.0 announcement, all affected Sarawakian companies are eligible to apply for Wage Subsidy programme under Pemerkasa+.
“Together with the recent announcement of one-month extension under Permekasa+, tourism and retail related companies are eligible for seven months in total while other companies are eligible for two months,” Wan Junaidi quoted Mohd Azman.— DayakDaily