by NIK IMRAN NIK HUSSEIN
THERE are certain things only the poor in the country will thoroughly understand and appreciate.
What can you buy with RM100 these days? Well, for a rich man, probably two slices of cheesecake and two coffees at Starbucks or Coffee Bean.
However, for a poor family like mine, it could feed us for a week.
Sounds impossible for some? Well, that is reality.
We do not have our meals at restaurants or hotels, but instead, we use the money to buy rice and other essentials, which are cooked at home and can last us several days.
I grew up in a very poor family in Gemas, Negri Sembilan, and truly know how valuable RM100 is to a family like mine.
My father was an odd-job worker and my mother washed dishes at a restaurant near our home. We struggled, but we were happy and through my parents’ hard work, I managed to get a sound education.
Having encountered such hardships, I find it rather upsetting and painful to read how some quarters are ridiculing the RM100 additional aid announced by our prime minister (PM) recently.
Like I mentioned earlier, RM100 may be pittance to some, but for the hardcore poor, it means an extra week or more with food.
People like my family and I understand the hardship of earning RM100 and we would like to take this opportunity to thank our PM for the additional aid.
That extra RM100 will go a long way for us. Also, as far as I can remember, families in my village used nothing but cooking oil sold in polybags.
In fact, I never saw a single bottle of cooking oil till I finally left my kampung to pursue my studies.
This is also something my family is very grateful for. The subsidy for the 1km polybag cooking oil will certainly help those in the lower income groups.
Overall, as someone who comes from a hardcore poor family, the announcement by our PM is greatly welcome and goes a long, long way for us.
There is no point in making it an issue as those quarters, especially the Opposition parties, would never understand the plight of the hardcore poor.
This is something “orang miskin” like us would appreciate and understand and once again, we would like to take this opportunity to say a big heartfelt thank you to our PM.
Nik Imran Nik Hussein