Asia

Malaysia flooding: PM Najib Razak pledges extra funds

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Media captionMalaysian families lean on each other to survive the floods, as Jennifer Pak reports

Malaysia has announced an extra 500m ringgit ($142m; £92m) to help victims of the country's worst flooding in decades.

At least five people have been killed in the floods along Malaysia's east coast, with over 160,000 displaced.

Prime Minister Najib Razak made the announcement after visiting flood-stricken areas.

He has faced public anger after being photographed golfing with President Obama in Hawaii during the storms.

Mr Razak cut short his holiday, and defended his "golf diplomacy" with the US leader, saying that it was difficult to decline the invitation as it had been planned for a while.

"Every day when I was there, I received the latest report on the flood situation... as it became more serious, I decided to return to the country as soon as possible," he said in Kota Bharu, the capital of Kelantan province,

Image copyright AFP
Image caption The Malaysian Prime Minister, Najib Razak, has visited the worst affected areas
Image copyright AFP
Image caption The flooding left whole villages underwater
Image copyright AFP
Image caption Victims have complained the government has been slow in responding
Image copyright EPA
Image caption Air is the only way to get aid to some of the flooded areas
Image copyright Reuters
Image caption PM Najib was criticised as photos emerged of him playing golf with President Obama on Christmas Eve

The extra funding will go to victims after the floods subsides, and is on top of an initial 50m ringgit ($14m; £9m) allocation.

Entire towns have been submerged by the flooding.

Rescue workers have been struggling to bring in enough food and supplies for families sleeping in relief centres.

Some victims have accused the government of being too slow in responding.

"I am angry with them. We don't care about their politics. We just want the government to do what they should do and help us," one woman told AFP.

Eastern states are often flooded during the monsoon season but heavy rain and winds have worsened the situation this year.


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