Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Elderly should be those over 55, not 60. Maybe 3 million elderly in Malaysia...??

Finally, the government is shifting its attention to the elderly Malaysians. 1.45 million in 2000, and in 2010, expected to be 2.1 million. If we include those above 55, then the numbers will be even higher, and really the elderly should be defined as those above 55 years of age..not only those above 60, given the fact also that retirement age is still 55 for most Malaysians.

With its ageing population surpassing the two million mark by 2020, Malaysia will have to pay more attention to the needs of this group, says Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman.

The number of Malaysians above the age of 60 is widely expected to reach 2.1 million in 11 years, he said, adding the aged population in 2000 was just over 1.45 million.

He said the government was committed to looking after the welfare and to improve the quality of life of its senior citizens.

“This change in demographic will pose challenges to governments in providing them (senior citizens) with suitable health care and social services,” he said when opening the Sabah Senior Citizens Association building in Tanjung Lipat near here yesterday. - Star, 1/4/2009, Population shift poses challenge

For a long time the government's concern seem to be towards the pensioners (pesara) only, who were former public servants (also known as 'government servants' - a term used to, possibly, 'brainwash' public servants into believing that they must be pro UMNO led-BN, that was the government of the day. Now, after Pakatan Rakyat is also beginning to be government in many states - there may be a tendency to just use the correct term being 'public servants' - which also conveys clearly that first loyalty is to the people(rakyat)...not some political party/coalition which wins elections)

What kind of care should be accorded to the elderly :-

* Healthcare - thie should preferably free, and also easily available. [Maybe even need to have mobile medical units, with doctors, who will be able to go to homes of the very elderly (or the elderly who have difficulty moving around) to treat them, or even just give them a medical check-up]

* Food & Board allowances - maybe they should also be given a fixed monthly sum generally, especially those that are not under any pension scheme.

* There must be special travel rates for the elderly - air, sea, road, rail (for taxis too - and the government could subsidize the rest)

Assistance for the elderly must be through a government Ministry - not through the BN political parties.

Recently, I heard that MIC was collecting the data (and/or photocopy of NRIC) of the elderly Indians, apparently because 'they' were going to give the elderly some 'benefits'/allowances - but alas, not all Indian elderly will get recorded, especialloy those that are not in MIC (or have no MIC friend). They may probably be giving the elderly some monies that the government has decided is for them. Maybe, MIC just wants this data for some other reason - maybe Samy Velu wants to share his monies with the elderly to celebrate his recent victory...

But, if it government monies intended for the elderly, will all that is entitled to receive it get it? NO.

Will those who are entitled get ALL that they are entitled to? MAYBE, some may be siphoned into the pockets of the party...

Disbursing any assistance through political parties or 'elected political reps' causes problems. There is that problem of 'corruption', the problem of 'discrimination', the problem that not all intended beneficiaries of what is really a government allocation will recieve what is due. Like the fuel subsidy, moneys/benefits for the people should be disbursed to the people through the relevant government departments & ensure that there are sufficient public announcements on the TV, Radio and print media about these.

No comments: