SEREMBAN, Aug 10 — The Negeri Sembilan Legislative Assembly sitting today unanimously passed a motion related to measures to address the cost of living issue.

The motion, tabled by Chennah assemblyman Anthony Loke Siew Fook and debated by 18 representatives from the government and opposition blocs since yesterday, allows the state government to freeze any increase in tax, rent, charge and payment rates until inflation can be controlled.

When winding up the debate on the motion, Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Aminuddin Harun also announced a special allocation of RM5 million to implement the ‘Jualan Harga Ladang Nismilan Prihatin’ programme in all districts from Sept 1 to Dec 31.

He said the initiative would be implemented through the cooperation of all quarters including producers, breeders, farmers and government agencies, so that essential goods could be sold at farm prices, thus eliminating the element of middlemen.

“Through this initiative, items such as chicken, meat, eggs and cooking oil will be sold at 20 to 30 per cent lower than the market price.

“This initiative is a two-pronged strategy that has a positive impact not only on the people as buyers but also producers, breeders and agricultural entrepreneurs who are directly involved in supplying the product,” he said at the Second Meeting of the Fifth Session of the 14th State Assembly here.

In the meantime, Aminuddin said the state government also constantly examines existing policies and inputs through the cooperation of agricultural agencies, the state Irrigation and Drainage Department and the state Veterinary Services Department to assist the people.

Earlier during the debate session, Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan (BN-Rantau) suggested that the state government make a new policy to deal with the high cost of living for a long-term solution.

“This is also to make the state trader-friendly and encourage more people to do business here. Policies need to be formulated according to the current needs,” he said.

In another development, deputy speaker Datuk M. Ravi announced that Datuk Dr Ahmad Azam Hamzah has been elected once again as a Senator to represent Negeri Sembilan in the Senate for a period of three years.

The selection of Dr Ahmad Azam, 61, a veterinary doctor at CP Holding who has been active in politics since 1998, received the majority support of assemblymen on the last day of the state assembly sitting.

The state assembly sitting was adjourned to a date to be announced later. — Bernama