With the recent increase in oil prices – both cooking oil and petrol, there are millions of Malaysians who are losing sleep over how to cope with their meager salaries, which as it was, was being stretched too thin to make ends meet.
Then, there are millions of small time stall and restaurant owners, who depend on cooking oil as their main ingredient in their business, contemplating of closing shop for increasing prices will mean drop in business.
Yet, with all the doom and gloom, there comes a small light of hope that even though the authorities may have lack of empathy or sympathy by increasing prices and pulling back subsidies, there is humanity left among the rakyat.
One of them is former Kuala Muda district education officer (PPD) Abd Ghani Haron, 60, fondly known as Cikgu Ghani,
Bernama reported that some 2,000 motorcyclists were seen gathering around a petrol station in Tikam Batu near here as early as 6am Friday, after a free petrol charity programme announced over social media went viral yesterday.
“The project organised Cikgu Ghani was the first to be implemented after the petrol price increase early this month.
“Abd Ghani said when he arrived at the petrol station at about 6.15am, several motorcycles were already lined up, although they were informed the programme would run from 6.30am until 10am.
“We have organised a number of charity projects but this is the first time we are giving away free petrol for 100cc to 150cc motorcycles to ease the burden on low-income earners following increase in oil prices.
“The project went on smoothly and people of all races came. I hope to make this a monthly charity event,” he told Bernama.
Cikgu Ghani is focusing on rural areas, where these increases have affected the people most.
While those on social media posted memes about frying fish in an empty wok without oil, one does not realise that for many, busying fish or oil is a big dent in their pockets.
And ministers who compare mineral water prices to cooking oil prices, they fail to understand that even clean piped water is a luxury to some Malaysians.
Cikgu Ghani was reported by Bernama as saying that the funds used for the charity event was RM5,913.
“I plan to increase the amount to RM10,000 next month.
“I get my funding from loyal supporters gained through Facebook and WhatsApp and I welcome anyone willing to donate for charity. We have all the technology, why not use them to help those in need,” said Cikgu Ghani, reported Bernama.
There definitely are more Cikgu Ghanis out there, doing what they can in their own small ways, to help others in times of need.
And it is these people who reach out to those who are struggling daily to put food on the table and pay their bills, the strength to hope one day Malaysia will be a better place for everyone, rich and poor.
Source : Zakiah Koya@The Heat Malaysia Online