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YOURSAY | Surviving Covid-19 - up the creek without a paddle

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YOURSAY | ‘When people start disposing their assets, it tells you that many are running out of hard cash.’

Cash-strapped Malaysians make beeline for pawn shops

Anonymous_1543475877: People are losing jobs and are pawning whatever they have to get some cash.

Most of them are working in the small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and as trade workers such as wiremen, plumbers, electricians, and small-time contractors.

A majority of them are from lower- and middle-class families trying to make ends meet without depending on the government.

In stark contrast, we have a top-heavy cabinet of more ministers and deputy ministers and special envoys with fat salaries, numerous perks, pensions (even though some of them are still working) and a bloated civil service.

And to rub salt into the wound, Defence Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced last month that civil servants will receive a RM500 incentive for those Grade 56 and below.

Why the generous bonus payments to staff of this bloated civil service. Why do this when their jobs are secure? Why, when we are facing a pandemic and an expected fall in our gross domestic product (GDP)?

Will there be any money left for the unemployed and those who will go bankrupt?

Those in the private sector have also supported the politicians and served the government in their own way. Why can’t the government lend a helping hand and give them a lifeline to earn a living again?

Kahlil Gibran: Indeed, this is not the time to pay bonuses to government servants and or to failing government-linked companies (GLCs).

I will not believe that our current government has that much money to throw away when it is needed to fight the Covid-19 pandemic and to help Malaysians who are now out of jobs.

Anonymous 2293481434643651: The sign of hardship is just the beginning.

Let us see what will happen in the coming months when hundreds of thousands of Malaysians are laid off. There will be many more beelines to pawn shops nationwide.

Pray that we all can weather through this somehow.

Curdle: This is heart-breaking in the light of such leadership of ineptitude and xenophobic racism. People's lives are utterly destroyed.

Where to begin to rectify this horror? Did International Trade and Industry Minister Azmin Ali include this in his allegedly "detailed economic planning"?

Clever Voter: The signs are not good. When people start disposing their assets, it tells you that many are running out of hard cash. How long will the money from pawning their valuables will last, I wonder?

It is public knowledge that many live from hand to mouth. Unlike public servants that can rely on a generous system, many others are unskilled and semi-skilled and even the retirees are poor. They have been left to fend for themselves.

Once again, we are reminded that the social system in Malaysia is weak and exposed.

Anonymous_1544340881: In March, newly appointed Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin announced on television that the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government cares for Malaysians.

Has anyone in the beeline for pawn shops received any care until now?

All the government did during these seven weeks was flattening the curve, which was more or less done after a month.

It really was a wasted opportunity as we could have conducted mass screening like in Singapore, South Korea, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Even US President ‘Drink Detergent’ Donald Trump is calling for widespread mass testing.

With no widespread testing, the conditional movement control order (CMCO) will probably cause numbers to rise again.

We have to do our own social distancing and take care of ourselves since we cannot rely on the ‘backdoor’ government. If not, we might experience a worse second or third wave. That will really kill more Malaysians, and the economy too.

Anakraja: The government should and must take care of the poor Malaysians like our neighbour Singapore.

In the republic, every Singaporean who is 21 years and above is provided with ample cash aid for living expenses. Muhyiddin, it's about time you “talk the talk, walk the walk”.

Cogito Ergo Sum: The difference between Singapore and Malaysia is that our neighbours have money because of prudent fiscal policy.

Here, we have leaders pilfering and misappropriating state funds. And these very leaders are now running the government.

We have a finance minister who is a former banker and has no first-hand knowledge of the troubles faced by the people.

Jackal Way: Let those who have pawned their belongings demand from politicians in Umno, PAS and Bersatu for some real cash.

Former Minister Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor alone is worth more than RM1 billion. Remember, not too long ago, he told the Kuala Lumpur High Court that RM2 million is just pocket money to him.

Those in need of cash should also ask politicians Dr Mahathir Mohamad and his family, Najib Abdul Razak, Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Hishammuddin Hussein and a few others.

I am sure their assets alone would be worth around RM10 billion and they should be willing to help Malaysians in desperate need of money.


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