Agencies under Finance Ministry visit flood areas in Sarawak today

KUCHING: Several officers from agencies under the Finance Ministry went down to the field today to see the flood situation first-hand to ascertain other aid that can be given to flood victims in the state.

Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan said he took along the group of officers from Putrajaya to visit flood stricken areas in Sarawak for them to determine the forms of contribution which could be extended by their agencies.

He said he was also there to convey assurances from Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak that all forms of flood-related initiatives announced by the Prime Minister recently will also be extended to the state government and people of Sabah and Sarawak.

He said this includes RM500 for affected families who have registered with the Social Welfare Department, aid to construct homes destroyed in the tragedy, earlier payment of the 1Malaysia People’s Aid and more.

“I also want to confirm today all flood aid will be given to Sarawak and Sabah too,” he told a news conference with Sarawak Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Alfred Jabu Numpang at the State Disaster Management Committee Flood Operations Room at Wisma Bapa, Petra Jaya, here.

Ahmad Maslan also listed out the various aid announced by Najib when he delivered a special message on the current economic development and nation’s financial position in Putrajaya two days ago, including an additional RM500 million to kick-start repair works and welfare programmes for flood victims.

An additional RM100 million was allocated to TEKUN to help businesses affected by floods and RM100 million to Amanah Ikhtiar Malaysia (AIM) for easy loans to support small medium enterprises and microenterprises, as well as efforts to postpone the repayment of loans taken from Bank Simpanan Nasional, Agrobank, SME Bank, TEKUN and AIM for up to six months.

He said he also discussed with Alfred Jabu on assistance for victims who incurred losses due to damaged crops and livestock killed in the tragedy, adding that he has asked for the matter to be proposed to Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin who will visiting Limbang tomorrow.

“…I was told that there are cases of crops and livestock affected, and though the matter is subjective and difficult to calculate it can be raised,” he said.

Ahmad Maslan and his delegation later visited flood evacuation centres in Kuching. -Bernama

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