Perak MB apologises for late response to homeless issue, pledges to do better

IPOH: Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Faizal Azumu has apologised for the late response in helping the homeless in the state.

He said the delay was because the state government was only informed of the situation during the movement control order (MCO).

“I am truly sorry, and I take it as my own weakness. Our state executive council was also only appointed during the fight against Covid-19.

“On behalf of the state government, I would like to thank the non-governmental groups (NGOs) and individuals who have been distributing food to the homeless in the city," he told reporters after witnessing food distribution by an NGO to the homeless on Jalan Dato Onn Jaafar on Wednesday (April 15).

"And since her appointment, state Women Development, Family and Social Welfare Committee chairman Datuk Dr Wan Norashikin Wan Noordin has been conducting visits on the ground within the state daily.

"Despite the delay, we assure that immediate action will be taken to help the needy latest by this week, ” he added.

It was reported by StarMetro that volunteer groups were worried about the growing number of homeless folk in the city centre during the MCO.

The NGOs have also urged the state Welfare Department to find a place for them to stay.

Faizal said the government would draft a plan to help the homeless and needy during and after the MCO.

“Our main concern right now is to provide them with shelter and food.

"We saw how the Federal Territories Ministry is providing the homeless with shelters, and we might consider the same method, ” he said, adding that the problem was also happening in Taiping and other districts.

"We were told that the number of food packs given to the homeless in Ipoh has doubled.

"We will check whether some of these recipients are genuine or are taking advantage.

"We will also look into the possibilities of finding jobs for them," he added.

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