Malaysia needs laws to protect rights of elderly

Source: The Star2

Malaysians observe their filial duty to care for their elderly but incentives must be given to help ease this burden. Photo:

Every night, 73-year-old M. Raja loiters around the streets of Kuala Lumpur waiting for food deliveries by Good Samaritans who feed the homeless. Raja lives with his son and daughter-in-law in the city but laments that he is alone and hungry all day while they are at work.

“They leave me some buns at home but they come home very late and I get hungry. I come down to the streets because I have friends here and I can get some nice food from kind people,” says Raja, who used to do odd-jobs until five years ago when he suffered a stroke that left him unsteady.

Raja moved from his hometown in Parit Buntar to live with his son after his wife passed away a year ago. His story of isolation and loneliness is a common one among the elderly, particularly in urban populations. Read more