Monday, August 15

Sabahans bullied by price difference – LDP

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KOTA KINABALU: Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) chief publicity officer Albert Kok urged the Federal Government to expedite the implementation of price standardization in East and West Malaysia to lessen the people’s financial burden following the price hike in cooking oil and fuel.

Kok said the prices of goods in East Malaysia, particularly Sabah, have always been higher than that in peninsular.

“Products such as daily essential items, clothing and food are more expensive in Sabah compared to West Malaysia or even Kuala Lumpur, which contribute to the high cost of living here.”

He said the prices of goods in Sabah should not be higher than in West Malaysia considering the salaries of Sabahans were lower than their peninsular counterparts.

“Even the minimum wage in Sabah is slightly lower than Peninsular Malaysia,” he added.

As such, Kok said the Federal Government should standardize the prices of goods in East and West Malaysia as soon as possible to alleviate the rakyat’s financial burden.

“It is unacceptable that we have two prices for the same item in the country, and Sabahans are the ones paying the higher price.”

He pointed out that many products have East and West Malaysia prices, in which Sabah and Sarawakians are paying five to 10 per cent more.

“Sabahans are clearly being bullied here. The government has the responsibility to rectify this issue immediately.”

He said East Malaysians have been enduring unequal treatment all this while. For instance, locally made vehicles are RM2,000 to RM3,000 more expensive in Sabah.

“Although the price difference is due to logistics cost, the manufacturers should have absorbed the cost rather than passing it on to East Malaysian consumers.”

Kok added the Federal Government could formulate a policy to enforce price standardization nationwide as part of the effort to reinstate Sabah’s rights.

“Since the Federal Government has decided upon a lower minimum wage for East Malaysia, it means that the government also agrees that the living cost in Sabah and Sarawak should not be higher than that in West Malaysia.