KUALA LUMPUR: A total of 32,316 fishermen throughout the country are eligible for the ‘cost-of-living’ (ESH) allowance from the government this year, after a vetting process was carried out.
Agriculture and Agro-Based Minister Datuk Salahuddin Ayub said the number was less than the 35,233 recipients in December last year.
Salahuddin said there were criteria which the ministry had to study so that only those who were really eligible received the aid.
“Those who are eligible will remain. We are not taking away anyone’s rights. There are others who said they were fishermen, padi planters, to get the allowance. This is not right.
“So the fishermen and padi planters who have been vetted, we will give the allowance. However, those who did not meet the criteria can appeal. If they fulfill the criteria, we will give them back the allowance. God willing,” he said in the Dewan Rakyat today.
Salahuddin was replying to a supplementary question from Datuk Dr Noor Azmi Ghazali (PH-Bagan Serai), who asked for the number of targeted farmers and fishermen and the actual number who received the aid after the vetting process.
Earlier, in reply to an oral question from Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob (BN-Bera) son whether the government would continue to provide aid and incentives to fishermen, Salahuddin said the government would continue providing subsidies and incentives to fishermen and padi planters based on current financial allocations.
“For the fishery sector, a total of RM70 million has been allocated for the ESH, which is RM200 a month to owners of zone A vessels, workers in zone A, B, C and C2.
“A total of RM3.5 million in ESH , which is RM200 a month is for inland fishermen and RM17 million as incentive for fisheries catch (IHTI),” he said.
For the rice and padi sector, Salahuddin said RM232.5 million was for the Federal Government Padi Fertiliser Scheme (SBPKP), RM281.5 million for the Padi Production Scheme (SIPP) and RM75 million as Padi Seedling Incentive.
“A total of RM516.5 million is for Padi Price Subsidy Scheme where the amount of subsidy has been increased from RM300 per metric tonne (mt) to RM360 mt,“ he said. — Bernama