SIBU (April 23): The state government has been urged to call for a special State Legislative Assembly (DUN) session to discuss and look into how to help folks whose livelihood has been affected by the imposition of tighter movement controls.
Democratic Action Party (DAP) Sarawak vice-chairman David Wong said the session could among other things discuss the provision of financial aid to the people through a supplementary bill.
The Pelawan assemblyman said he believes the reason the current enhanced SOP is only in effect for five days, subject to extension by Sibu Division Disaster Management Committee (SDDMC) if the need arises, is that the government is worried about its impact on the livelihood of the people and state’s economy.
“The fact is that people are already heavily impacted long ago. And if the state government wishes to flatten the Covid-19 curve, it must provide enough assistance to the people in order to fight the pandemic together.
“People still need to bear their living expenses, and business owners to pay wages and rents as usual. Not receiving aid from the government, some have to take the risk to continue to operate even if they are not allowed to do so, to put food on the table,” he said in a statement.
Wong said the largest obstacle in Sarawak’s fight against the pandemic is that the government is not working together with the people.
He called on the government to ‘be compassionate’ and provide those affected with sufficient aid to ensure that people can stay home during the tightened movement control period without worrying about their livelihood.
“I once again call on the Sarawak government to show its determination to fight this pandemic. We should make good use of our state reserves, provide necessary assistance to the people and carry out comprehensive control. Being indecisive will certainly worsen the situation in the state,” he said.