PETALING JAYA, Aug 5: Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim has called on the government to commission an independent study to identify the reasons why a large segment of Bumiputeras are still struggling despite the privileges accorded to the community.
This, he explained, was to ensure initiatives under the 12th Malaysia Plan reach the intended targets and the underprivileged.
The former finance minister said while policies and initiatives to help the Bumiputeras were welcomed, plans would continue to fail if they did not help those “truly in need”.
“Privileges that are meant to raise the economic well-being of the Bumiputeras have been used to only enrich the elite and therefore widened the income disparity between the rich and the poor,” he said in a statement.
Anwar said government policies to enhance the participation of the Bumiputera community and other ethnic minorities in the economy were better achieved through investment in capacity building, skills training and education.
The government should focus its attention on promoting key economic growth areas and providing adequate support for small and medium enterprises, he said.
He said although the tabling of the 12th Malaysia Plan had been postponed to early next year, the government must study its approach to help the Bumiputera community.
“And do away with policies that only benefit an elite few.”