KUANTAN: The Pahang government has announced special financial aid of up to RM14.99mil to reduce the burden of people affected by the Covid-19 pandemic in the state.
Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Wan Rosdy Wan Ismail said a one-off cash assistance of RM150 and food items like rice, flour, sugar and others worth RM50 would be given to some 17,935 recipients who were directly affected and lost their source of income due to the movement control order (MCO).
"The distribution process will begin by March 24 and will be handled by the district officers and local authorities in each district.
"Keep in mind that those who will receive this aid must continue abiding by the MCO. There is no need to go to any government offices for the aid. Stay at home and the aid will be distributed directly to the homes of those involved," he said in a statement on Monday (March 23).
Wan Rosdy added that an allocation totalling RM252,000 would be provided to the 42 state assemblymen in Pahang to directly help people affected by the spread of Covid-19.
A 50% deduction in rent for low-cost housing scheme (PAKR) and affordable housing scheme (RRM) tenants throughout the state would also be given for the month of April.
"This initiative will benefit 2,453 tenants and involves a financial implication of RM150,000 to the state government.
"As a show of support and sympathy by the state government and local authorities for hawkers and small traders, the government has agreed to grant a 50% deduction in payments for stall rental and other facilities, farmers' market, morning market, night market and car boot sale permits for the month of April.
"This initiative will benefit 6,238 small traders and hawkers involving a financial allocation of RM1.293mil to the local authorities," said Wan Rosdy.
He also announced that the state Welfare Department would expedite payment for all types of financial aid under the department to March 27.
This included children's assistance, disabled employee's allowance, bedridden, disabled or patient-care provider's aid, unemployable disability aid, elderly assistance, foster children assistance and apprenticeship assistance benefiting some 26,806 recipients and involving an allocation of RM8.95mil.
"In appreciation of the service and sacrifice of operations room personnel and members of security forces involved in the MCO enforcement in the state, the Pahang government has agreed to approve a RM765,800 allocation to cover the cost of providing food to the personnel involved," said Wan Rosdy.
In addition, Wan Rosdy said the state Islamic Religious and Malay Customs Council (MUIP) would prepare special allocations for the destitute.
"As I announced last week about the setting up of the Pahang Covid-19 fund, the state government welcomes donation from all, including state government related companies, private companies and anyone generous enough to contribute," he said.
Donations could be made by bank transfer or ATM to Perbendaharaan Negeri Pahang's Bank Muamalat account number 06010002165711 under the subject TABUNGCOVID19PAHANG.
Contributions could also be made via the PahangGo digital application.
Wan Rosdy also expressed the state government's gratitude to all who were involved in curbing the spread of Covid-19 in Pahang.
"They are the true heroes who are willing to sacrifice at the frontlines, day and night without knowing the meaning of fatigue. Let us pray that they be given the strength and patience in facing this challenging task.
"To the people of Pahang, I call on all of you to continue abiding by the MCO. Just stay at home because we want to break the virus chain. If we can do it, there will be no new cases and we can focus on treating the existing patients.
"May all the hard work of dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic be successful," he said.