40,000 Malaysians benefitted from Prihatin package

by HARIZAH KAMEL/ pic by RAZAK GHAZALI

ABOUT 40,000 or 96.8% of Malaysians benefited from the Prihatin economic stimulus package (Prihatin) according to the Department of Statistics Malaysia.

In its “Effects of Covid-19 on the Economy and Individual — Round 2” survey, 68.2% of respondents stated to have received three forms of assistance, while 13.9% received two and 17.9% received one.

Chief statistician Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin said the analysis presented in the survey covers qualitatively individual views on economics, employment, life patterns and education.

“Through Prihatin, a total of 70.1% of respondents found the stimulus package was effective as it reduced their financial burden, while 9.1% of respondents thought it was effective as it eliminated the financial burden faced during the Movement Control Order (MCO) period.

“In dealing with the current situation of the Covid-19 pandemic, 90.9% of respondents stated that priority was given to health and life, followed by income (4.6%) and normal life (4.5%),” he said in a statement last Wednesday.

The survey was conducted online from April 10-24, with a total of 41,386 respondents from all over Malaysia aged 15 and over participated.

The study found that 96.1% of respondents were satisfied with frontliners and government-provided health facilities in dealing with Covid-19.

Overall findings implied that the virus outbreak affected the lifestyle of 96.3% of respondents and that 92.9% of respondents were prepared to maintain their current lifestyle after returning to normal life once the MCO ends.

On education, the majority of the respondents (54.5%) said the level of Internet access for online learning was modest.

As a result of the Covid-19 effect, most educational institutions conducted online learning sessions and found that an average of 67.5% of respondents conducted online learning sessions within one to five hours a day throughout the MCO.

A total of 46.3% of respondents said their online learning time was faster during the day between 7am and 12pm.

Mohd Uzir also said the findings from the survey are expected to help the government and people in addressing the effects of Covid-19 on economy and life.

“The analysis was based on respondents who participated in this special survey and did not represent the views of all Malaysians. It should be interpreted with caution to assess the effects of Covid-19 in Malaysia and it is not official statistics,” he said.

However, he said it can be used to support the current state of affairs of the country.

“With the liberalisation of the MCO provided, the majority of the public will no longer carry out their duties as usual and have to adapt to the new norms in life including daily work and activities,” he added.