Pending rep to Welfare Dept: Expedite release of death compassionate assistance to KGC holders next-of-kin
0 month ago, 27-Jul-2020
KUCHING: Pending assemblywoman Violet Yong has urged the state Welfare Department to expedite the release of the RM3,000 death compassionate assistance to the next-of-kin of the Kenyalang Gold Card (KGC) holders.
Noting that the death compassionate assistance is one of the benefits of KGC, Yong said she was told that it requires at least more than a month for the State Welfare Department to process and verify, which in her view, is way too long and unacceptable.
“It is only right for the government to give frank and clear details about who are qualified to apply for the RM3,000 death compassionate fund.
“From our understanding, not every KGC holder who passed away are eligible for the RM3,000 particularly those senior citizens who have insurance coverage, Social Security Organisation (Socso), Employees Provident Fund (EPF), and owned properties,” she said.
Yong further questioned the true benefits of being a KGC holder, as she believed that the senior citizens in Sarawak deserve more sincere care and help from the state government.
She noted that the KGC comes with instant discounts or rebates on everyday essentials like groceries, food, healthcare, telecommunication and transportation.
“The government also claimed that the KGC includes other benefits such as employment, tailoring, hair salon and massages as well as high value special offers.
“Unfortunately, so far, we have not seen any benefits offered by the state government which our senior citizens could enjoy to ease their financial burden. For many, the current KGC is only a mere shopping discount card with very limited choice due to not many participating merchants,” she said.
Yong is of the opinion that the state government should consider extending its scope of benefits to the senior citizens by including those benefits that could ease the financial burden like giving out periodic aged pension, old-age carer allowance, parenting allowance, widow allowance, dementia support programme, support for various essential services, assistant for household costs and others.
“It is the responsibility of the state government to ensure our public funds are put to good use by maximising the benefits and entitlement of KGC rather than sticking to the current range it could offer now,” she said.
The KGC was officially launched on Mar 9, allowing applicants (senior citizens aged 60 and above) in the state to enjoy special privileges and discounts on health services (pharmaceutical and recovery); public transportation; essentials such as groceries, clothes, shoes, optical services; self-care such as reflexology, massage, spa treatment, manicures, pedicures or hair-styling; and recreational or theme parks.
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