Wee questions mySalam protection scheme coverage

PETALING JAYA: Without any increase in the budget allocation, Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong has questioned the government’s mySalam medical protection scheme coverage extension for B40 to M40 group.

While he welcomed the M40 initiative, the MCA president said it should be done properly, especially when the scheme has failed to provide sufficient insurance coverage to the B40 group.

He said “it does not make sense” when the coverage increased from 40% to 80% without increasing the budget allocation.

“If the B40 group is not being taken care of properly, what’s the point of extending it to the M40 group?

“Wouldn’t it create more problems?” Dr Wee said in a Facebook post yesterday.

Pointing out an example, Dr Wee said the critical illness protection should be three times the insured’s salary, not like the existing protection of RM4,000, which is lower than the median income of RM6,275 for an M40 wage earner.

He said the government should improve the application procedure of the scheme since many found it difficult to claim from it due to red tape.

“The same goes to the medical report charges when filing a claim,” he said, adding it was not true although the government claimed it was exempted.

Dr Wee said that without a clear direction, the supposed insurance protection scheme would be “heading towards becoming a charity scheme.”

Meanwhile, Dr Wee also said the government must explain the reasons that caused a double-digit rise in raw building materials when they claimed there was no hike in cement prices.

He said the prices of raw building materials for the construction sector rose drastically for November and December 2019.

The Producers Price Index report by the Statistic Department showed raw building materials rose by 5.9% in November, compared with the same period in 2018, and increased again to 16% the following month.

“If the double-digit rise in raw building material prices are not due to cement prices, the minister must answer as to what caused such a high rise,” he said.

Dr Wee, who is Ayer Hitam MP, said the hike has an impact on the economy and consumers purchasing power.

He was responding to a statement issued by Domestic Trade and Consumers Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail yesterday, denying there was a hike in cement prices by four cement manufacturers.

Earlier this month, Dr Wee raised the alarm that cement prices had gone up from RM180 a ton in October last year to RM230 a ton despite the Government’s assurances there would be a hike by manufacturers unless agreed by the Domestic Trade and Consumers Affairs Ministry.

He said contractors and construction companies claimed that cement prices rose some 44% since October last year.
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