It is unacceptable that hundreds of thousands of the rakyat are living in poverty while the country’s leaders are living in luxury on wealth that does not belong to them, said Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim.
This is especially as this country has achieved independence for more than six decades and yet, as of July 2022, there are about 136,000 households in extreme poverty.
“It’s embarrassing if we allow these people to live in poverty while the leaders live in luxury and continue to accept rewards that are not their right.
“It is haram for us political leaders or public servants to practise corruption or wastage in a situation where hundreds of thousands of our people are living in difficulty,” Anwar said in his prime ministerial mandate on developing Malaysia Madani in an event in Putrajaya today.
The Pakatan Harapan chairperson said it is the government’s responsibility to strive in order to free the people from poverty.
“I use the word ‘free’, but it doesn’t mean offering help because they will continue to depend on the government – the dependency syndrome.
“Our approach should be to free them from this plight so that they live independently in Malaysia.”
Although 20 percent of the middle-income group (M40) households have slipped into the bottom 40 percent (B40) category during the Covid-19 pandemic, Anwar said it should be an excuse to leave the dire situation as it is, without any bold intervention.
He also stressed that the poverty index must be measured differently.
“Apart from (looking at the) income, the measure of poverty should be multidimensional, a multidimensional index. This is more fair.
“This has been initiated before, I want it to be completed,” Anwar added. – Malaysiakini