KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 21 (Bernama) — Ex-servicemen entrepreneurs have been allocated RM50 million under Budget 2015 which will be fully managed by the Finance Ministry, said Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Ahmad Maslan.
For the purpose, he said a special committee would be set up to evaluate each application sent via any ex-servicemen’s non-governmental organisation (NGO) based on a set of criteria.
“From the feedback received, many NGOs are interested in obtaining the fund but don’t know how and with which authority they need to deal with. So we will set up a committee under the Finance Ministry to evaluate applications based on certain criteria.
“Among the basic criteria, the NGO should be competent and registered with the Registrar of Societies with a reasonable number of active members as well as a verified set of accounts,” he told reporters after a meeting and dialogue with several ex-servicemen NGOs at the Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC), here, Tuesday.
On Oct 10 when tabling Budget 2015, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced an allocation of RM50 million specially to assist ex-military personnel in the economic sector.
The allocation is part of the additional fund of RM500 million provided by the Entrepreneurs Group Economic Fund (Tekun) out of which, RM350 million is for Bumiputera entrepreneurs, RM50 million for Indian entrepreneurs and the remaining RM50 million for young women entrepreneurs.
In this regard, Ahmad advised ex-servicemen entrepreneurs interested in the fund, to register with any ex-servicemen NGO to facilitate them getting recommendation.
Meanwhile, Ahmad who is also Umno information chief, said RM50 million had also been set aside for consumer associations to be involved in information programmes and monitoring of prices of goods.
“These associations include CAP (Consumers Association of Penang), FOMCA (Federation of Malaysian Consumers Associations) and PPIM (Malaysian Islamic Consumers Association) for them to do this.
“We have the Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Ministry’s enforcement unit but the number of officers is limited.
“As such, we need the involvement of consumerism NGOs as they have many members,” he said.