Family living in squalor receives aid

National 2 minutes, 27 seconds


A FAMILY living in squalor in Kg Sungai Akar has received multiple forms of aid since their predicament was shared on social media on Saturday.

The post that was shared online showed Aliuddin Hj Abd Hamid’s house that has become decrepit and unfit to live in.

A portion of the house which previously housed a bedroom and a bathroom collapsed which was a result from prolonged termite infestation.

It also showed that Aliuddin has been living in a shelter made out of zinc that is connected to the ground floor of his initial house.

Speaking to The Brunei Times, Aliuddin said that he has been living in the shelter for almost five years with his wife and two children, the eldest being 18 years old and the youngest being five years old.

He is unemployed and admitted that he never applied for welfare stating that he would prefer to earn his own living by taking any part time work that was available including being a cleaner as well as a caretaker of a shrimp farm.

“I usually earn around $20 or $30 with each job that I take which most of the time is enough for me to buy the daily necessities such as rice,” he said.

The 50-year-old added that most of the time he would receive aid from his relatives in the form of school supplies for his children and most recently a relative lent him a car so he could transport his children.

Previously, the family travelled by bus to get around.

When _The Brunei Times _visited Aliuddin on Sunday, a group of Samaritans were already present to handover donations in the form of basic necessities which also included apparel for the struggling family.

The spokesperson of the group who only wished to be known as the Pg Seri Indera family said that they were aware of Aliuddin’s situation due to the post that was shared on social media.

“Brunei is never short of individuals who are willing to help those who are in need and I believe that it is one of the responsibilities of us fortunate to help those who are not whenever we can especially in this blessed month of Ramadhan,” he added.

The village head of Kg Sungai Akar, Hj Ramlee Hj Md Zain said that he, along with his family went to visit Aliuddin the moment they received the post that revealed Aliuddin’s situation, adding that Aliuddin was never registered as a welfare recipient of the village.

He said that the Kg Sungai Akar Village Consultative Council will be using a portion from its charity fund to help Aliuddin in the mean time.

“We have also written down his details to be submitted to the relevant welfare authorities,” he added.

Hj Ramlee also wanted to remind the public to contact their respective village heads upon discovering individuals in need of help before sharing it on social media.

The Brunei Times