Sivakumar handing over the Kotak Prihatin PERKESO to Gunasegaran at his home in Klang. Present were Dr Mohammed Azman (left) and Ganabatirau (right). – KK SHAM/The Star

KLANG: K. Gunasegaran felt something was amiss when he began losing his appetite and had trouble breathing.

The 42-year-old engineer was then diagnosed with ischemic heart disease and heart failure with reduced ejection fraction in 2022. He was down to 58kg from 98kg and stopped working since the dire diagnosis.

As the family’s sole breadwinner, Gunasegaran was desperate to find ways to put food on the table for his wife and three children.

“This disease makes my heart and kidneys weak till I have trouble breathing. I have trouble eating as well. I can’t do anything.

“I felt like a fool after I stopped working. I studied so hard (to be an engineer) but now I can’t work,” said Gunasegaran.

Sokkayee thanking Sivakumar for the invalidity pension.Sokkayee thanking Sivakumar for the invalidity pension.

Fortunately, he has been a Social Security Organisation (PERKESO) contributor since 1999. This means he is eligible for a monthly disability pension for the rest of his life.

Human Resources Minister V. Sivakumar paid Gunasegaran a visit at his residence in Klang on Tuesday together with Selangor Socio-economic Development, Social Welfare and Workers Empowerment Committee chairman V. Ganabatirau and PERKESO chief executive officer Datuk Seri Dr Mohammed Azman Aziz Mohammed.

Sivakumar presented Gunasegaran with his monthly invalidity pension of RM2,751. Gunasegaran also received an oxygen tank, a commode chair and a wheelchair.

Fellow long-time PERKESO contributor P. Sokkayee also received her monthly invalidity pension of RM500 as well as rehabilitation equipment, including adult diapers, a commode chair and a wheelchair, from the minister.

The 54-year-old former factory worker suffers from kidney issues and would feel numb after walking or conducting daily activities, which restricts her movements.

“On May 23, the medical board confirmed that Sokkayee suffered disability due to degenerative kyphoscoliosis, which made her unfit for work,” according to a PERKESO statement.

“As such, she qualifies for a monthly pension for the rest of her life and PERKESO will also prepare physical rehabilitation facilities and dialysis treatment for her.”

Emphasising the importance of social security, Sivakumar said that many employers are still unwilling to make PERKESO contributions for their workers.

“Some employees themselves also believe that contributing to PERKESO is not necessary.

“On the contrary, it is extremely important to have social security to ensure not only your wellbeing, but also your family’s.

“If you are unwell and suffering, your family suffers as well,” Sivakumar told the media after presenting the disability pensions.

He said the small contribution of 3% to 5% from one’s salary to PERKESO has not changed since 1971.

“It is only a very small amount. But this small amount can make a great difference in your life.”

Sivakumar also urged housewives under the age of 55 to get covered and husbands to contribute to the Housewives’ Social Security Scheme (SKSSR) on behalf of their wives.

“Currently, only 35% or 176,883 housewives are being protected under SKSSR, short of the target 500,000 housewives set by the Human Resources Ministry for this year,” he said.

The SKSSR implemented on Dec 1 last year was introduced under the Housewives’ Social Security Act 2022, aimed at providing social security protection to housewives from domestic injury and invalidity while managing households.

Sivakumar said that RM167,000 in SKSSR benefits had been paid to insured housewives and their families as of May 24.

“This proves that the scheme meets its objective in providing protection for beneficiaries should they be involved in accidents, or experience invalidity or death when managing households.

“I also strongly encourage third parties such as NGOs and private companies to sponsor this contribution for housewives,” he said.

Sivakumar shared that his ministry is aiming for one million gig economy workers to contribute to PERKESO to protect them from various risks while on the job.

For more information, go to or call 1-300-22-8000.

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