KOTA KINABALU: Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun has advised members of the Sabah legislative assembly as well as the Community Development Leaders Unit to practice financial discipline when spending aid allocations such as Bantuan Orang Susah (BOS).
Besides ensuring the aid reaches the intended communities, the state Finance Minister said assemblymen and community development leaders must also complete and submit their spending reports to help the Sabah government monitor the efficacy and reach of the aid.
"The reports are also important for the related departments to keep track of those, and also for the Finance Ministry to maintain Sabah's five-star financial rating, which is among the best in the country,” he said at a briefing by the Sabah Welfare Services Department with community leaders here on Wednesday (March 22).
"The reports are not designed to trouble the assemblymen or leaders but it is one of the government's measures to ensure the allocations reach the intended recipients," he added.
Masidi said distribution of BOS, which involves an allocation of RM100,000 for each of the 73 members of the state assembly, as well as the submission of the reports must be done consistently.
He stressed that the funds must not be kept and spent only at the end of the year.
"I hope that all community development leaders will do their part in distributing BOS fairly to people who truly need assistance," he added.
Masidi also reminded community development leaders to ensure healthcare equipment loaned to the public through the homeward programme under the state Welfare Services Department is well cared for, to maximise the number of people who can benefit from it in the long term.
"It is our hope that once the clients or patients recover, the equipment can then be loaned to others who are also eligible and truly in need," Masidi said.
The homeward loaner-cycle programme provides patients with essential healthcare equipment such as hi-lo beds, ripple mattresses, wheelchairs, oxygen concentrators, ward partitions, commode chairs and other items required by home-based patients.
Also present was Community Development and People's Wellbeing Minister Datuk James Ratib and Assistant Minister Datuk Flovia Ng.