PENAMPANG – The implementation of the 1Malaysia People’s Aid (BR1M) to relieve the people’s burden is the correct measure taken by the government under Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, says Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak Sunday.
He said the assistance introduced in 2012 had benefited low-income families and help generate the economy.
“In the past, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (Tun M) criticised the implementation of BR1M but when I read the newspaper today (Sunday), Tun M has changed his stand and said BR1M is OK.
“From the past, we have been saying BR1M is one of the best methods to help the people,” he said when met by reporters after attending the Penampang Parish Christmas Open House here.
He was asked to comment on the statement of the former prime minister who is also the chairman of Parti Pribumi Malaysia, Saturday that BR1M would be retained if Pakatan Harapan comes to power.
Salleh said the change in stand by Dr Mahathir showed the opposition were only good at criticising the policies implemented by Barisan Nasional (BN).
“However, they do not see what the BN government has done in the interest of the people,” he added.
Meanwhile, Salleh said the people must respect each other’s religion to maintain harmony as it is the basis for the establishment of Malaysia which recognises religious freedom as the nation’s foundation.
“The difference lies in our beliefs and how we get close to god. We have to cast aside political differences to enhance unity among the people of various races and religions,” he said.
Salleh said as a responsible government, the Barisan Nasional (BN) will assist all the religions, including in the building of houses of worship.
“When there is no general election, it is time for us (BN) to provide the best service to the people.
“The government cannot be fixated on politics to the extend of forgetting the responsibility to the people who gave them the mandate,” he added.
Penampang UMNO division chief Datuk John Ambrose said the best recipe in winning the next general election is to find similarities in the people’s different beliefs.
“Sabah is an example of high tolerance between the people of all races and religions.
“The Sabah people do not have a problem in sitting down together with those of different religions,” he added.