Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s contributions to Amanah Ikhtiar Malaysia (AIM) has greatly helped the organisation to grow since 1987 and remain instrumental in helping women escape from the hardships of poverty.
AIM acting board chairman Datuk Seri Dr Syed Hussain Syed Junid pointed out that the prime minister was one of the first individuals who came to the organisation’s aid in its early days as he recounted the organisation’s history with over 8,000 AIM entrepreneurs from the Kedah and Penang regions today.
“At that time, no financial institutions welcomed us. Hatta Bank also would not partner with us over concerns of whether the lower-income group would be able to manage repayments.
“But dear friends, Datuk Seri Anwar was the one who extended his help, and took the initiative to establish the Ikhtiar Fund to ensure the success of AIM,” he said in his speech during the AIM entrepreneur carnival, in the presence of Anwar.
Anwar not only launched the fund but also sought donations and contributions from individuals and corporations himself without prejudice about the borrowers’ ability to repay their loans, Syed Hussian added.
“With the funds from the Ikhtiar Fund, AIM financed women who were struggling with poverty and trying to give their children a better education.
“Datuk Seri Anwar’s efforts ensured that these women became AIM beneficiaries and they were able to start small businesses to generate incomes,” he said.
Anwar had shared earlier in his officiating speech that AIM had a special place in his heart and shared key moments in the past with the audience, including approving RM200 million in allocations to the agency in the 1990s during his tenure as Finance Minister.
Syed Hussian also said that no one could deny that AIM had been able to develop and be acknowledged due to Anwar’s efforts.
“The man who is with us today has dedicated his life to eradicating poverty since his university days. He hasn’t changed till today.
“Datuk Seri Anwar’s fight to eradicate poverty has been consistent and the setting up of AIM, an achievement we are all proud of today, is a manifestation of his commitment and determination to end poverty in this country,” he added.
Source: BERNAMA News Agency