KUALA LUMPUR: Cost of living appears to be the most popular topic under 14 categories on the 2018 Budget microsite online.
Under that category, easier access to home ownership and increased allowances for various groups, were among the more popular suggestions offered by Malaysians who visited site.
“As you (Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak) know, costs of living have increased. As a civil servant, I suggest service allowances to be increased,” said Ravidasan.
Richard Samie also requested a suggestion along the same lines, saying that the salaries of civil servants should be increased by four per cent, parallel with current inflation rates.
“Housing allowances should be added by RM100. This is because renting and buying homes are expensive.
“Increase in housing allowance can help civil servants simultaneously increase consumer power. When the people spend, the economy flourishes and the country benefits,” he said.
Another contributor by the name of Haslina, requested for civil servants to be given two months’ bonus.
“I empathise civil servants who have not received any bonus since 2013. Thus I hope you (Najib) will award a bonus incentive to reduce their burden they have due to increasing living costs,” she said.
For the Housing and Urban Living category, Ahmad Mahir suggested the idea of creating a specialized bank for matters of housing financing with relevant mechanisms.
This, he said, would aid Malaysians who wish to purchase a house but have trouble doing so due to absences of documents and illegibility given by conventional banks.
“It could also solve the problem of excessive property which are unsold.”
Alif Nazmi meanwhile said the minimum wage should be increased from RM900 to RM1,500 a month as salary and cost of living especially house costs are unstable.
“Costs of property should be controlled especially those in the city. An apartment costs up to RM250,000 and the minimum wage is extremely low.
“Until when will the people live without their own houses if costs sky-rocket without control?”
For Healthcare, Leong suggested the 2018 Budget go towards building a children’s hospital, as done in other countries.
“The hospital is to cater to children’s healthcare which are different from adults. It can use a more specialised approach to treatment including towards psychology aspects of children.
“The hospital can also be the centre for child surgery,” he said.
Another suggestion gravitated towards increasing the capacity of government hospitals, as offered by Sulaiman Azhar Halpi.
“The number of patients rise every year but hospitals are still crowded and have a long waiting time.
“My suggestion is to build more government hospitals, employ more specialists and add more multilevel parking spaces.”
Earlier this month, Najib had opened suggestions for next year’s budget for 15 days starting Sept 4 to 18.
He praised the crowdsourcing campaign, saying a total of 13,837 ideas and suggestions were received, an increase from 8,352 suggestions received for the 2017 Budget.
The tabling of the 2018 Budget is expected to be held Oct 27.
Source : https://www.nst.com.my/news/nation/2017/09/284645/2018-budget-cost-living-most-popular-category