GEORGE TOWN, Dec 26 – The Penang Government has pledged a total of RM1.5 million to assist flood victims from four states affected by floods in the country next week. The pledge would be released once approval was given by the state executive council during its next meeting.
Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, who chairs the executive council, is currently on an overseas trip until the end of the year. This was said by the state’s welfare, caring society and environment committee chairman Phee Boon Poh, adding that they would be mobilising their disaster relief teams for the same purpose.
He informed that a report had been made with the National Security Council (MKN), asking them to assign the places for Penang to deploy their teams. Phee further said Penang’s welfare department had expertise in administering relief centres and were ready to assist.
“We have been made to understand that many places on the East Coast are inaccessible but we are looking for options to ensure help reaches those who need it,” said Phee. The department, he said was now procuring foodstuff to be distributed for the relief aid through the state’s emergency funds, totalling RM500,000.
Items such as milk powder, foodstuff, sanitary towels and bottled water, he said, were among those needed. “The first consignment would be sent out by tonight to Perak using the Seberang Prai Municipal Council’s (MPSP) heavy duty trucks to reach difficult flooded areas there,” he added.
A collection centre for rations and other aid materials had also been opened at the Caring Society Complex in Jalan Utama on the island for donations to be made in various forms such as supplies for the victims. Phee expressed Penang’s readiness in helping all affected states in the country, setting aside all differences. “What is more important now is to help those in distress,” he added.