Has our quality of life really improved in recent years? Are all workers able to live in dignity? Are families able to afford nutritious, balanced diets?
Today, we look at the first point of the five-point People’s Agenda. Anne Lasimbang, executive director of Pacos Trust, a community-based organisation in Sabah, explains why it is crucial to raise the dignity and quality of life of the people.
Perkara pertama Agenda Rakyat: Tegakkan maruah serta kualiti kehidupan rakyat
- Bangunkan sebuah ekonomi mesra rakyat yang membuka peluang pekerjaan serta bermaruah kepada semua
- Pastikan sistem kesihatan awam yang mencukupi serta perumahan mampu milik, sistem pendidikan yang berkualiti kepada semua, keselamatan sumber makanan, upah hidup (living wage) dan pendapatan asas sejagat (universal basic income) serta jaringan keselamatan sosial kepada golongan yang terjejas
- Lindungi hak pekerja, termasuk para pekerja kontrak dan gig, sama ada di dalam ekonomi formal atau tidak, serta pastikan jaminan kerja (employment security)
The first item of the People’s Agenda: Uphold the dignity and quality of life of the people
- Develop a people-friendly economy that creates jobs and dignity for all
- Ensure adequate public healthcare and affordable housing, accessible quality education, food security, a living wage and universal basic income, and a social security net for the vulnerable
- Protect the rights of all workers, including gig and contract workers, whether in the formal or informal economy, and ensure employment security
If you have not seen the People’s Agenda, along with the full list of endorsers, check it out here. If you belong to an NGO that would like to endorse the People’s Agenda, get them to fill up the online endorsement form.
AGENDA RAKYAT – Lima perkara utama
- Tegakkan maruah serta kualiti kehidupan rakyat
- Galakkan pembangunan saksama, lestari serta tangani krisis alam sekitar
- Raikan kerencaman dan keterangkuman
- Selamatkan demokrasi dan angkatkan keluhuran undang-undang
- Lawan rasuah dan kronisme
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Quality of life has different interpretations among different people.
Lifestyles or “Gaya Hidup” of today are very different from yesteryears of 60s-80s as people now easier to subcumb to modern temptations.
Those rich with excess resources can indulge in flashy cars, fine dining, modern stylo milo gadgets.
The worst are the rich wannabes in debt traps just to live to be perceived to be on same level as the privileged ones.
Agree. “Lifestyle” is almost rubbing the noses of the masses in the mud. The critical issue is the availability of affordable and reliable (a) essential goods from the market (b) basic infrastructure and services from government or the market. Instead, the masses face boasting, politicking, kleptocracy, dereliction of duty, stonewalling and worse.
“the masses face boasting, politicking, kleptocracy,…” therefore they have to spend $ for Netflix when RTM and TV3 cannot deliver the basic quality.
Now young people have extra expenses on Netflix, Disney+, Spotify subscriptions on top of weekly GSC movie for entertainment. Little money is saved for future?
— UN found stunted and malnourished children in Putrajaya and elsewhere; related issues could be contraception, fake food and the enforcement of alimony
— the big floods late last year may have been due to diversion of funds for dredging etc.; one state is now relaunching it in a big way as if it is a new invention
— some of the foreigners are bringing in major diseases because of “close one eye
Quality of Life is improving since rakyat can now enjoy premium coffee at Zus/Starbucks instead of kopitiam without guilt, can shop grocery at higher class Mercanto/Grocer Village instead of Giant/Lotus’s, can get any university degree from private institutions, can drink Tealive/Daboba instead of Coca-Cola, can drive SUV instead of Kancil, Proton X90 instead of Proton Saga can opt for CU/Family Mart instead of 7-11… All these are happening while of wages stay stagnant while Ringgit is depreciating… Wonders of Malaysia Boleh!
Perhaps the top 20% has now expanded to the T30 but the M40 has now moved downwards to M50 and the B40 is now the B20.
So the top 30% are ok and fairly comfortable while the bottom 70% (especially the bottom 20%) are finding it tough.
Top 30% (not necessarily have rich dads) know how to use money to generate more money (leverage).
M50 mostly spend beyond their means to inflate their ego and dignity -> no savings high debt.
B20 used to have large family members to work in farm, but today farming no more but higher burden, sweat to earn min wage from T30.
Retailers cannot survive if they depend only on the T30.
Most advertising campaigns are targeted at M40 and B20 knowing they are easily succumbed to desire to purchase even in debt.
Even the fast food like McDonalds and KFC are no longer cheap yet more lower income folks are consuming them without any guilt.
Certain people M and B groups somehow spent big on cars with bank loan fail to realize cars are expensed items and depreciate in value with time. They should spend no more than RM50K with local Proton or Prrodua, no need Toyota or Honda. Savings can put in banks for FD or investment!
For ordinary people, most of the bank FD interest is close to inflation rate or worse. I.e., your capital gets undermined. Of course, there are special funds for special people, including “off-shore” banks.
Bank Negara surprises with 25 basis point rate hike
Good news for retirees to get more for interest. Bad news for those taking up new loans.
Cars are tools to boost self image/ego to attract opposite sex and to gain clients confidence in business dealings. Once able to achieve such goals, be fast to dispose the cars to salvage some money. However, not many can follow such golden rule.
According to finance minister Zafrul, Malaysia’s top 20% earners (T20), benefitted from more than half of the RM4 billion the government has spent on petroleum subsidies this year, till March, due to the blanket subsidy method. For every RM1 of fuel subsidy, 53 Sen go to the T20, while 15 sen benefit the B40.
Food production is a security issue, as the pandemic reminded us. A few years ago, a minister boasted that he would “eliminate middlemen” to improve the income of food producers. However, nothing has changed.
Many food producers only carry on because they have no other option. Everywhere, their ages are rising, and young adults including their children find it foolish it to take over.
Singapore is aiming to produce 30% of its own food by 2030, a number that is currently closer to 10%.
To achieve this, emphasis has been put on citizens to help grow what they can.
Growing food in urban farms on carpark rooftops to reused outdoor spaces and retrofitted building interiors is also key to the ’30 by 30′ goal.
We have yet to see the Malaysian effort to boost food security.
The general Bolehland approach is (a) set up a committee of has-beens (b) appoint a foreign consultant who proposes a proprietary method or product (c) appoint a crony contractor or GLC (d) pay in full even before the job is half done (e) depending on the political climate, investigate, prosecute and settle.
In Kedah, the “Green Revolution” gave us irrigation canals below the level of the fields, and many deadly agro-chemicals still in use. About 1-2 years ago, the agri. authorities banned one chemical. When asked what the alternative was, a senior official suggested glyphosate.
Long time ago a Kedah MB’s “Green Revolution” was to grow PADI on rooftop. Singapore took the concept and grow vegetables on HDB rooftop. Kedah should fight for royalty.
Kedah MB wants to grow ketum.
More social problem ahead.
Padi needs plenty of water and needs to pumpto high level may leaks through the roof and machines or water baffalos to plough the earth and collapse the roof. Whereas Sink apor smarter. Vegs and fruits – needs less water and timber or alum frames to support the plants which is more practical
Our PM can set up chicken mall to promote chicken business just like his hugely successful digital mall which is world renown now?
Problem is our M40 spend money like they are T20. Our B40 spend money like M40. All because of easy credit and belakang kira mentality. Living for today and worry not for tomorrow. Never mind if EPF is empty so long as can spend today more to impress others.
Singapore dollar now rises to 3.2 Ringgit. Many choose to work in Singapore to earn Singapore dollar for higher dignity and purchasing power to satisfy current lifestyle and quality of life.
Not sure what the Keluarga Malaysia leaders are doing to boost the power of Ringgit for us to protect our purchasing power?
It is suicidal to call for GE now since many will vent their frustration over the government inability to contain rising costs.
Quality of life in Malaysia for foreigners can be excellent when their currencies worth a lot upon conversion to weak ringgit so that they can splash on street food in Penang.
This Japanese enjoys his street food binge on island.
He has good time with Gurney Hawkers, New Lane and Red House.
Barang Naik era a pain to locals BUT foreign tourists find Penang a paradise.
Quality of Life is very closely linked to the value of the currencies.
People’s Agenda is very well reflected in the words of Singapore’s National Pledge:
All 5 Points very valid and Relevant.
These issues affect many people in Malaysia and elsewhere.
I will share my thoughts and aspirations in my next communication.
Aloysius Francis Pinto
Not ONLYred dot MIGHTY $$$ but orso quality of life, pay,security and MCA Transport dont build LRT, MRT and people has to buy car and burnthe earth.
Tu Lang used to drive to Belum once in blue moon. Those living in red dot can orso go to Johor, Melaka and to Batam, Bintan even much chip chip