YB Hannah Yeoh invited my office to join hers in their Jom Shopping Ramadhan program. The program gives RM100 vouchers to 500 poor families in Subang Jaya. I really admire Hannah’s methodology in implementing this program. She doesn’t pick the 500 recipients but leave the choosing to the local Surau and Masjid leaders. Her office only manages the process. She has an efficient and transparent system. Everyone got down to do work (her former interns joined in). My staff and intern also helped in registration and bagging of goods.
I like this Jom Shopping voucher system because first, we do not handle cash and second, there is no need to award contracts to supplier, and thirdly, we leave the choice of goods in the hands of the recipients.
Therefore it is somewhat alarming to note that some leaders are going back to supplying noodles and rice to the poor instead of a clean and transparent voucher system. Supplying goods instead of vouchers means that suppliers may stand to make hefty profits.