“Why so much for contract political staff?” Anwar Questions RM181 Million Increase In PM’s Dept
In today’s (30 November) parliament session, Port Dickson MP, Anwar Ibrahim demanded an explanation for the staggering increase in funds allocated to hire “political contract staff” under the Prime Minister’s department.
The emolument for the appointment of these staff has been increased by nearly RM200 million for 2021. “There is an increase of RM181.4 million compared to the year before for the contractual appointment of political staff under the Prime Minister’s department”.
“I want to ask what is the relationship of this RM181 million with the poor rakyat’s suffering that are in need of attention from the government,” said Anwar during the Dewan Rakyat session. He also questioned the concealed funds allocated to initiatives like JASA and KPKT.
“If we combine that with JASA and KPKT, it already amounts to RM200-300 million ringgit. I call upon the Prime Minister himself to answer why these funds are necessary. We paint a picture of a concerned government that cares about the people’s suffering but we give RM181 million to contract workers when it should be rightfully given to frontliners and the youth who are bearing with the costs of this pandemic,” added the Port Dickson MP.
Anwar also questioned the disparity in what was being given to public servants as opposed to the government’s foreign ministry.
“In this day and age when this Budget is regarded as a Covid-19 budget, we may give RM300 to the police or fishermen but the increase for the Prime Minister’s Department in terms of operational expenditure is 10.7% or RM482.4 million”.
“What I want to focus on is the allocation of Budget 2021 for top government officers including 32 ministers and 38 deputy ministers. Anwar added that under the Prime Minister’s Department alone, there are five full ministers and five deputy ministers.
He then questioned the functions of several ministers such as the special communications and media advisor, the special advisor for the economy, and the offices of the Prime Minister’s special envoy to the Middle East, China, Japan, Korea, and Taiwan.
“When we discuss Covid-19 matters, is it worth allocating funds to positions that do not produce results? During Covid-19 Where do the special envoys go? All of them are in Kuala Lumpur.”
“I want to ask what is the role of ministers in the Foreign Ministry at this point in time when we are forced to appoint and burden the rakyat with such high operational expenditures,” said Anwar, adding that he believes the tasks allocated to these ministers could easily be accomplished by Wisma Putra.
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Also read: Budget 2021 Has Been Passed Via Voice Votes, Less Than 15 MPs Stood For Division Vote
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