KUALA LUMPUR: Do not abandon your parents when they are old, says Datuk Seri Michael Chong.
The MCA Public Services and Complaints Department head said this as he revealed that the department has handled 11 cases of elderly parents being abandoned by their children since 2017.
“In the last two years, a total of 11 people have come to MCA to seek our help.
“They begged us to help send them to welfare or old folks homes, saying that they were not wanted by their children,” Chong told a press conference at Wisma MCA yesterday.
He said that those who sought the department’s help were aged 50
to late 80s.
Chong said that many of the children said that they could not afford to have their parents live with them.
“In the majority of the cases, it was the children who asked them to leave,” he said.
He said that this was a practice that should not be widespread, as welfare or old folks’ homes could not afford to take in all elderly people who were abandoned.
“There is no law that says ‘Don’t abandon your parents’ here but it is against our culture,” he said.
Lawyer Datuk Theng Book said that unlike Singapore, parents here could not ask for support from their children as there was no provision in the law for parents to claim maintenance from their children.
“Only Singapore has this law and parents who are 60 and older can claim support from their children if they can prove that they can’t support themselves,” said Theng at the press conference.
He said that the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry should look into the intricacies of implementing the same law in Malaysia, should the situation of children abandoning their elderly parents get out of hand.
As for Chong, he said that while there is currently no such law in place here, children should have “a heart”.
“Remember that they are your parents,” he said.