KUALA LUMPUR: The next time your tailor or hairdresser plans to charge exorbitant rates while making a house call, tell them the prime minister’s wife has already stated their days of overcharging are over.
Speaking to members of Bakti, the Welfare Association of the Wives of Ministers and Deputy Ministers, Rosmah Mansor showed she could relate to others like her when she spoke of the trials and tribulations faced by women who were the wives of “civil servants” with no income of their own, a Malaysiakini report said.
“We housewives always become victims. Before we could tailor a baju kurung for RM500, and even then it is considered expensive, but now to make a nice one…well, we have no choice because we need to wear proper clothes to functions…
“They (tailors) are profiteering, but they try to evade this by claiming it is service tax,” she painstakingly explained, saying that with the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST), tailors could no longer take advantage of women like her and hide behind the “sales tax” issue as a convenient argument to raise prices.
She said the same applied to hairdressers and added, “For people like us, even a RM200 hike will hurt.”
Relating how preposterous the charges were for washing and dyeing her hair at home, she said, “Now when I want to dye my hair at home, the hairdresser charges me RM1,200. Wow, that is expensive but they say the price is different in the store. It’s pricey because it is home service…
“They can charge three, four or five times the price citing ‘home service’”, she pointed out saying it had become too expensive and almost a luxury to get her hair done.
Feeling strongly about being taken advantage of, Rosmah reiterated, “I am speaking on behalf of housewives. Bakti believes that home services must be subject to (pricing) guidelines.”
Preferring to suffer in silence and place her hopes on GST to make prices fairer again for women like her, Rosmah said, “I can’t ask Najib, he wouldn’t answer.”
So for now, Rosmah has to simply bite her lip and pay up, safe in the knowledge that her financial woes when it comes to tailoring and hairdressing will be a thing of the past come April 1 when GST is finally implemented.