SHAH ALAM, 20 Jan: The Malaysian Consumers’ Association criticised the Federal Government’s move to establish a special committee to address the rising cost of living by describing it as being ‘outdated’ and does not help the people.
Its President, Datuk Paul Selvaraj said that the government should be more efficient in resolving the issue of the sharp increase in prices in the market by issuing short-term and long-term goals as soon as possible.
He said that it was time the Barisan Nasional (BN) government acts, not just because they have the power to control prices.
“The Federal Government should deal with issues instead of waiting for a committee to study why costs of products and services are rising.
“A lot of products are overpriced because of lack of competition in the market. The government has the means to control prices and cut duplication so that living cost issues can be solved,” he said, quoted from The Ant Daily portal.
Six months after the May 5 polls, the cost of fuel went up, the price of sugar increased, electricity tariff shot up and toll prices are likely to increase, not forgetting the Goods and Services Tax (GST) next year.
Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has announced that a special cabinet committee set up by the government on the matter was an extension of the National Key Results Area (NKRA) on tackling the cost of living. He said the committee’s scope and functions have been widened.
This has however been criticised by the Central PAS Working Committee Member, Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad, who described it as being ‘too late’ and is merely to placate the people in a short term.
He said that the special committee will not be able to handle the rising cost of living as long as the country’s financial government is not changed and the practice of monopoly (direct negotiations) still plagues the government.