by Irene C.
August 12, 2013
Elderly parents are not to be treated like extra baggage or unwanted pets to be dumped in front of old folks’ homes such as Rumah Seri Kenangan like what some individuals have done.
Calling this a worrying trend, Minister of Women, Family and Community Development Datuk Rohani Abdul Karim lamented that this constituted a social problem which should not happen as the nation approaches a developed country status.
In fact, she said, children of these old folks, those sickly or bedridden should take it upon themselves as their filial duty to shower them with love and care.
“The opportunity to take care of your parents are limited, therefore, grab the remaining time to take care of them like how they took care of you before,” said Rohani when met at her Hari Raya open house at her house yesterday.
She was among the dignitaries receiving Head of State Tun Datuk Patinggi Abang Muhammad Salahuddin and his wife Toh Puan Datin Patinggi Norkiah in their Hari Raya visits yesterday.
She added that it is very sad to see senile old folks who do not even know their own name and home address being dumped.
When asked about the rules on admitting old folks to the home, she said it would depend on the condition of the persons, like having no living relatives or family to support them.
She, however, advised that sending them there should only be a last resort as the waiting list is long besides it being very disheartening to see children leaving the responsibility of caring for their ailing and old parents to the institutions.
On laws to punish those abandoning their ailing parents, Rohani said it was not feasible to have such laws yet as it would result in congestion in prisons.
She suggested that children send their old parents who are still active to the Old Folks’ Activity Centre at Jalan Ong Tiang Swee to occupy their time.
“At the centre, we have various activities to fill up their time while their children are at work. After working hours, they will be picked up by their respective children and brought home,” she said, adding that the centre also teaches the old folks to make handicrafts which are marketed under the ‘Purple DNA’ brand and proceeds would be shared between them.
First opened in Miri, the centre is now available in Kuching, Sibu, Bintulu, Sri Aman and Dalat, Mukah.
SOURCE: The Borneo Post
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