IPOH: When 39-year-old Rohani Kamaruddin's lorry driver husband lost his job last year, their livelihood began to spiral downwards.
The family of six has since fallen on hard times when they could not operate their banana fritters stall.
She added at a press conference held by Perak MCA Public Service and Complaints Bureau head Low Guo Nan at her Bercham Raya on Tuesday (May 4) that her 43-year-old husband Rahim Ghazali used to work as a lorry driver before the MCO was implemented last year.
“He had to quit after falling sick and we had to rely on my income selling banana fritters, ” said Rohani.
Rohani said since they lost their source of income, they had to borrow money from friends and loan sharks.
“We borrowed a total of RM8,000 from Amanah Ikhtiar and we are required to pay RM250 back on a weekly basis. To cover that loan, we borrowed money from our friends and a total of RM4,000 from three different loan sharks, ” adding that they had to pay RM200 daily to the loan sharks.
She said the family tried to find ways to earn money including selling drinks at a Ramadan bazaar.
“I have three school-going children aged between seven and 15 and one five-year-old child. Apart from finding money to clear our debt, we also need to feed our children and get medical supplies for my husband who is suffering from hyperthyroidism, ” she said.
Rohani said the family also had to ration their food.
“I have not been eating for the last few days because we do not have money. We could not set up our stall for a few days due to the heavy rain. Even when we do have money, I would prioritise my children’s needs, ” she said.
Meanwhile, Low said he brought Rohani to the Welfare Department for help but was told that the process will take up to three months.
“The family contacted me for help and during our first visit, we brought them some dry groceries.
It is devastating to see the family living like this and since it will take a long time before the Welfare Department can channel some help, we will try to look and see if there are any non-governmental organisations (NGOs) that can help the family out, ” he said
Readers who are keen on helping the family may contact Low at 012-532 1128.