I raised the issue of semi-healthy Malaysians in the recent concluded Dewan Undangan Negeri sitting and by doing so, I came under much fire from ministers and YBs from the Barisan Nasional. I told the Dewan that the rise of the semi-healthy Malaysians was caused by bad policies of the BN government, which failed to ensure safer foods and drinks and a cleaner environment. The government in the past years talked so much of enforcement and control of food and environment, but, in reality had done very little. Instead, it was only promises over promises to do better but nothing concrete done so far.
I had spoken twice in the Dewan Undangan Negeri the contaminated water supplied by the authorities. In an audit report by the Audit Department, it was found out that many times the presence of bacteria and chemicals used to threat our water were above the permitted level. The water purification systems could have been out of date too and a new water treatment solution need to be found. Datuk Awang Tengah said I just wanted to create public anxiety on the matter. I was not there wanting to seek political mileage, but, I had to raise the matter because contaminated water had in the past years contributed the rise of medical bills and ate into our economy. The government and the public should be made aware of this that contaminated water and open burning each year in oil palm plantations also contributed to acute skin diseases, kidney and heart diseases, cancer and other ailments. Medical bills nowadays for their treatment are very costly and the government seemed kept mum over the matter and denied its policy over enforcement and health matter contributed to the recent increase of semi-healthy Malaysians. We could observe that too many if not most Malaysians over the age of 45-years old are semi-healthy people and they ate eat into our economy.
In the New Sunday Times ( May 31, 2009) it was said that tobacco smoking in 2004 in a research by the University Kebangsaan Medical Centre showed medical bills came to RM3 billion a year. The costs of treatment went up each year due to increasing healthcare costs. Experts said it could be higher and said, “The number of deaths and economic losses due to tobacco use exceeds that of the combined total of most infectious diseases including influenza, dengue, malaria, tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS”
If treatment for sicknesses caused by smoking alone eats into medical healthcare of about RM3 billion a year then there is no reason why medical healthcare bills caused by contaminated water, food and polluted environment could not eat into RM10-15 billion a year! What a waste of public funds! With each year’s healthcare costs reduced, Malaysians would not only enjoy a much more healthy life but also better education opportunities and infrastructures because money for healthcare could be channeled to these developments.
Deaths caused by tobacco were said about 10,000 per year. What about the unnecessary deaths caused by kidney and heart failures due to poor environment, contaminated water and food? All deaths bring sufferings and pain to the families of the dead. The dead may leave with their children and family without no proper bread winners and also lonely people behind and increase in suicide cases. In the end, the school going children will be forced to leave schools and some may even be forced to prostitution, rob, cheat and to steal and peddling of drugs. It has the effect in contributing to social ills and decay in society and moral.
It has now been than 50 years as an independent nation, the Alliance and BN government had failed miserably to ensure better health and better economic environment for Malaysians. The Alliance and BN governments had committed grave political crime and comes the next general election they should be wiped out as too many lives had been innocently taken away because of their bad policies.