Saturday, February 27

All food-supply chain contributors to receive aid



LUYANG: The State Government is extending a hand to all who are contributing to the food-supply chain, said Minister of Agriculture and Food Industry Datuk Junz Wong.

“The Sabah Government will help all who are contributing to the food-supply chain regardless of whether they are under B40 or M40. Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industry Sabah (MAFI) will channel RM300 to your bank account if you are rubber tappers, farmers, fruits planters, fishermen and breeders.

“For those who have already registered under my ministry, we have your details but we need your bank account. So please come forward to submit your bank account to the respective district agencies according to your sector,” he said.

For example, Junz said if they are rubber tappers in Tenom, they can go to LIGS Tenom office; if they are fishermen in Kudat, they can go to Kudat Fishery Department office; and if they are fruit planters in Kota Marudu, they can go to the Pertanian office in Kota Marudu.

“I will also try to help those not registered under any agencies of MAFI. Please also come forward because we need to identify you. We need your details so that my ministry can help you.

“To be fair, every applicant will only be helped once. If you rear chickens (breeder) and plant chilli (farmer) at the same time, you will only receive RM300 instead of RM600.”

Junz, who is also Warisan Sabah vice president, said a holistic plan to resolve problems faced by agropreneurs during the MCO period is also underway.

“Apart from short-term relief, a holistic plan to resolve problems faced by local players contributing to the food chain is to be finalised soon. The holistic plan will tackle issues involving local produces, marketing, logistics, transportation and sales, which will also address issues pertaining to food chain related industries such as fertilizers, seedlings, animal feed and fish mills,” he said.

Junz assured all that his ministry will do its level best to make sure they help farmers and fishermen survive this crisis, in order to sustain the continuity of food supply in Sabah.

He also urged Sabah agro players to apply for any available assistance in the meantime.

“There are also schemes and assistances decided in my first national exco meeting with Federal Agriculture Minister, Datuk Dr. Ronald Kiandee, on March 31.

“You can apply for aids programmes like the RM4.5 billion micro credit loan, the RM1,600 one-off Bantuan Prihatin Nasional, the up to RM2,000 employee-wage subsidy from Perkeso, the 15% – 50% electricity rebate (aquaculture and close door breeders) and the programmes funded through Lembaga Kemajuan Ikan Malaysia and Lembaga Pertubuhan Peladang.”