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Muhyiddin says NACCOL has failed to address cost of living issues

Publish date: Tue, 05 Mar 2024, 02:57 PM

KUALA LUMPUR: Former prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said the National Cost of Living Action Council (NACCOL) has failed in its role to address issues and challenges related to cost of living.

He cited the lingering issues concerning rice stocks and the escalating costs of essential items as evidence of this failure.

"They said they will bring these issues to NACCOL for discussion on the cost of living and the shortage of local rice. The question is, have the issues regarding rice been resolved?

"During my tenure in the government, I was involved in managing rice-related matters at the ministry. There was never a shortage of local rice during my time.

"At that time, rice was managed by Bernas. I am not saying that I fully supported a monopoly on rice," he said during the motion of thanks on the royal address today.

He criticised the poor coordination between NACCOL and government counterparts, saying that they do not seem to be aligned with each other.

"NACCOL is completely ineffective, as evidenced by the recent announcement regarding 'Madani White Rice,' which was said to have received approval from the Prime Minister.

"However, the Agriculture and Food Security Minister (Datuk Seri Mohamad Sabu) later said that the government did not make this decision. It's all a mess within NACCOL itself."

Muhyiddin also stressed the urgency for NACCOL to earnestly tackle these challenges proactively to prevent further deterioration, as it would greatly impact the public.

"The NACCOL chairperson must prioritise the cost of living issue. During the Covid crisis, not to boast, but we held daily meetings to address public concerns.

"Even when physical gatherings weren't possible, we utilised online platforms and video conferencing. Why is it that now, without a crisis, we're unable to resolve the cost of living issue?

"If the government neglects to resolve this ongoing problem, its repercussions will be severe and will disproportionately affect the people." he said.

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