Selangor Journal
Picture shown for illustration purposes only. — Picture via UNSPLASH

Auditor-General’s Report: Aid for urban poor not distributed fairly, evenly

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 3 — Approved aid for the Urban Poverty Eradication Programme (PPKB), to raise the quality of life for B40 families in the city, was not distributed evenly and accurately to the target group, despite reaching the targeted number of participants, according to the Auditor-General’s Report 2021 Series 1.

PPKB is a programme implemented by the Ministry of Housing and Local Government (KPKT) and involves several initiatives including Urban Community Economic Empowerment Programme (PEKB).

The report, released today, also said that the performance of the programme was not fully achieved because there were participants who did not generate income to get above the poverty line and did not benefit from the programme even though approval was given, because of the failure of the implementing agency to carry it out.

The implementing agency failed to carry out repair work that was approved for 113 PPKB participants, in addition to the remaining allocation for 2016, amounting to RM1.08 million, returned to the Finance Ministry following the KPKT’s failure to implement the programme.

“The audit analysis also found that a total of 2,193 participants who had the aid approved were out-of-town participants under the eKasih system; 309 participants did not manage to generate the minimum income; 25 others did not make use of the equipment received, and another 36 still remain in the poor/severely poor category,” read the report.

The findings were obtained as a result of the auditing programme for the 11th Malaysia Plan (11MP) and 12MP as of December 31, 2021.

Apart from this, another weakness detected was that as many as 22 local authorities (PBT) had PPKB account balances that were not spent to benefit the target groups. These balances ranged from RM11,808.43 to RM2.06 million, with a total balance of RM4.82 million.

Therefore, in order to overcome the weaknesses that have been raised and can be improved in the future, the report recommended that KPKT re-evaluate the eligibility criteria of participants so that the people who benefit from the programme are the B40 group in the city, and to ensure that there is no duplication of assistance due to the government’s limited financial resources.

The ministry also needs to re-evaluate the selection method for participants and courses offered, taking into account current needs and market requirements, so that income can be generated optimally, thereby helping them to get out of poverty.

“KPKT should also assess the need to manage equipment not used by the PEKB programme participants so that there is no loss on the part of the government for expenses incurred.

“In addition, focus should also be given to efforts to improve the coordination, monitoring, and evaluation mechanism of the programme, in order to achieve the targeted goals effectively,” it said.

— Bernama

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Editor Selangor Journal