KUALA LUMPUR, April 23 2012 (Bernama) -- Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the implementation of Cost of Living under National Key Result Area (NKRA) was his way of ensuring the rakyat's bread and butter issues were taken care of.
The prime minister said various measures were introduced to assist the people under this NKRA, particularly the poor and working class, and that RM36.7 billion was spent in providing various forms of assistance to the rakyat, from 2010 to last year.
"Hardworking Malaysians should not be punished by the escalating cost of living. Therefore, my government, while working hard to ensure persistent economic growth, will not compromise the interest of the poor and the working class.
"I will do whatever is best, in tackling rising costs and find ways to reduce its effects on the people, through the transformation process," he said in his latest entry in the blog, www.1Malaysia.com today.
Therefore, he urged the rakyat to stay with him and work hand-in-hand to transform the country to greater heights.
Najib said, as a responsible prime minister, he would never allow the people to be left out from the country s development, like the folks in Kampung Bantal.
"In the past, I have visited many villages in Malaysia, some of which comprised families with low income and near primitive lifestyle. One of the villages I remember most, is Kampung Bantal.
"Folks here survive on basic necessities and their low income makes life even harder for them to cope," he added.
He said, under such initiative, subsidies were given to maintain the price of RON 95 petrol at RM1.90 per litre, cooking gas, sugar and other necessities.
"Also, I ve announced a one-off financial aid package (or more commonly known as Bantuan Rakyat 1 Malaysia, BR1M) of RM500 each, for households earning RM3,000 and below.
"As many as 4.78 million households have benefitted from the aid. The goal is to help the poor and working class, like the hardworking folks in Kampung Bantal who earn below RM800, to cope with the increasing cost of living," he said.
For parents with schoolgoing children, Najib said he took note of their concern and had distributed RM100 aid per schooling child to mitigate their back to school expenses.
"That s RM530 million channeled back to the rakyat. Other innovative measures, such as the Kedai Rakyat 1 Malaysia (KR1M) and 1Malaysia Clinics were also launched under the Cost of Living NKRA," he said.