RAWANG – Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said today the 1Malaysia People’s Aid (BR1M) would continue to be given because it was a focused programme which had a major impact on the people.

The prime minister said BR1M reached the target group more than the bulk subsidy which he added also benefit the rich, foreign workers and law breakers such as smugglers.

“There is much leakage (in bulk subsidy), but with BR1M the recipients can make use of the money to shop, buy infant milk, school bags and clothing.

“This can indirectly help uplift the local economy such as the farmers’ markets, retail shops and so on,” he told reporters after meeting the residents of Kampung Sungai Terentang, here.

Najib was commenting on the alleged belittling of the BR1M payment by the opposition political parties.

The federal government introduced in 2012 the BR1M annual payment of RM500 for every household with a total monthly income of up to RM3,000. This year, it also paid RM250 to single unmarried individuals with a monthly income of up to RM2,000.

Najib said the government would continue to give the BR1M payment if it was given a fresh mandate in the 13th General Election come May 5.

He said the programme might be improved as per the pledge made in the BN manifesto. The manifesto had pledged to raise the BR1M to RM1,000 next year.

“We know that the programme benefits the people. So, the opposition is trying to turn it into a controversy.

“However, the people want the programme to be continued and the sum increased,” he said. -TSD