Rep wants Putrajaya to clarify whether Sarawak, Sabah padi farmers will receive special aid

Miro Simuh

KUCHING (Jan 1): Serembu assemblyman Miro Simuh is seeking clarification from the federal Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security on whether the special assistance by Padiberas Nasional Berhad (Bernas) will also be distributed to padi farmers in Sarawak and Sabah.

While welcoming the special aid that was previously announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Miro urged the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security to also look upon the padi farmers in Sarawak and Sabah when distributing the special aid.

“They (padi farmers in Sarawak and Sabah) do contribute to the self-sufficient level (SSL) percentage of (Malaysia’s) rice production.

“I urge and hope that the (federal) Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security will look upon us at Sarawak and Sabah too. Be fair, and the minister must adhere the unity government’s slogan of fairness to all Malaysians,” he said in a statement today.

Earlier in December last year, Bernas agreed to Anwar’s request that an allocation of RM60 million will be provided to help padi farmers nationwide.

In a statement yesterday (Dec 31), its minister Mohamad Sabu said the Bernas Special Assistance amounting to RM10 million will be distributed in stages to padi farmers in Kelantan, Terengganu and Pahang by Jan 16.

He said the aid will be given to padi farmers in the three states first, while those in other states will receive the aid when the remaining special aid totalling RM50 million is distributed.

He said his ministry and its agencies are finalising the list of farmers’ names and bank account numbers in the three states to ensure the distribution process runs smoothly.

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