Most Read
Most Commented
From Our Readers
LETTER | What's so difficult to care for ex-service personnel?

LETTER | Truly it is a shame. Shame that despite repeatedly trumpeting national progress, we see governments failing to care for our veterans and ex-police personnel.

It is a shame too when civil society ignores or fails to see the plight of our nation’s true heroes and heroines. 

These are men and women who put their lives on the line to defend our borders. These are crime busters who knew the risks but opted to keep citizens safe. 

Our veterans and retired police gave second place to family, kinship, and the comforts of home just so they could keep our nation’s flag high up with pride and honour.

It is a disgrace to see how a nation’s defenders are being treated while GLC appointees, corporate corridor captains, and senior civil servants enjoy the spoils of the country. 

They are lumped together under the civil service category when it comes to remuneration and rewards as if their efforts, sacrifices, and agonies are on the same bar of desk jobs.

While the civil service enjoys the trappings of fine offices, free lunches, overseas travels, and whatnots, our soldiers and police retirees battled their lives away in the jungles and were weather-beaten on the streets.

How should a responsible, compassionate, and caring government treat our veterans and retired police personnel?

Is it impossible to regard them with better honour and pride for serving country, citizens, and rulers gallantly?

Even the veterans’ fund management has punched deep, irredeemable holes depriving the retired defence personnel of better rewards. 

All because of corrupt people paid well to safeguard and make prudent investments. 

What is the use of seeming to give handouts of donations and allocations to the veteran or ex-service personnel’s organisations now and then (rarely too) when we should have governments guranteeing a more dignified future for them on retirement?

Just compare that with the pensions MPs draw.

How can we even attract the young to put patriotism as the drive to enlist in defending our nation’s borders or in securing a safer country for citizens?

The repeated sidelining of our defence and police forces has today made every parent discourage their children from pursuing a career in the defence or police force.

How sad.

Be it healthcare, comfortable housing or education for their children, it increasingly appears that it is becoming a tedious tough call for our retired defence and police personnel as they are put on a runaround or settle for far less.

How disgraceful.

When you witness the decades of stashed away investments of organisations and individuals including treasure troves of jewellery and foreign currencies, all gleaned from a resource-rich country, it is even more unacceptable of our national failure to treat our veterans and retired servicemen and women with better dignity and honour. 

The Madani government is running out of time with hardly three years to the next general election to reset the failed policies of past governments.

Worse, if a snap election happens, PMX suffers the brunt of failed promises. 

Soon we will be celebrating our 67th Independence Day. 

How can we even say “Thank you for your sacrifices, for your valour, for the things you carry, for protecting us, and for defending our rights. Thank you to all our veterans and ex-service personnel for your courage, strength and dedication to keeping us safe”, when as a nation we do not give them a better deal on retirement?

Hopefully, our veterans and ex-service personnel will have good reasons to give a grand salute for a meaningful and dignified reset in the country.

The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

Please join the Malaysiakini WhatsApp Channel to get the latest news and views that matter.