KUALA LUMPUR, 23 Sept -- The parliamentary Caucus on Reform and Governance will hold a seminar tomorrow on Economics, Poverty, and Gaps in Malaysia: Definition and Implementation for the Members of Parliament (MP) and government officials in understanding issues related to poverty in the country.
Its chairman Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said the independent body also invited prominent economy experts and distinguished professors such as Prof Dr. Rajah Rasiah and Prof Dr. Jomo Kwame Sundaram, both from Universiti Malaya, to share their present findings on the reality of poverty in Malaysia.
“Resolution and guidance on how the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government should correct its focus on creating a more compassionate and caring economy for the poor regardless of race and group, will be given at the end of the seminar,” he said in a statement today.
Anwar, who is also Port Dickson MP, said PH has been campaigning for a long time on the grounds that the previous government Barisan Nasional (BN) has failed to fight the issue of poverty.
“By using incorrect data, BN has stated that the problem of poverty has been virtually eliminated. We know the statement is inaccurate as I personally have witnessed poverty in every town and village I have visited in the country,” he explained.
According to Anwar, the remarks made by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights, Prof Philip Alston on Aug 23, has made every PH leaders realise that they could not hide behind the statistics and continue to ignore the reality, which creates maximum impact on the people.
The report claimed that Malaysia’s rate of poverty was between 16 to 20 per cent, which was far off from the official figure of 0.4 per cent.