Thursday, July 1, 2010

Windfall for BN MPs: A prelude to snap elections?

In an immediate reaction, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Nazri Abdul Aziz said this was "normal practice".

What normal practice? It is people's money, my money and your money! You waste it and then you said you need to cut the subsidy as the govt don't have enough money? WTF! How can i vote BN if you guys behave like this?


By Rahmah Ghazali
KUALA LUMPUR: Opposition MPs are predicting snap elections soon judging by the way the Najib administration is dishing out money to BN-held parliamentary constituencies.

Yesterday, online news portal Malaysian Insider revealed that an additional RM500,000 in allocations have been given to BN MPs in all constituencies held by the ruling coalition.

The money is being doled out by the governmentfor development purposes, said BN Backbenchers Club deputy chairman Bung Mokhtar Radin said.

He added that BN MPs usually receive RM1 million in allocations.

In response to this, Anthony Loke (DAP-Rasah) questioned the prime minister's motive and asked if it was prelude to snap elections being called.

"Is this a '1Malaysia' policy or is this indicative of a snap general election? Is the money being given out to constituencies to win voters' hearts and minds?" he asked.

He said he was disappointed with the 'unfair treatment' of opposition MPs with regards to the allocations, who he claimed do not have a say on it, compared to the BN MPs.

"The money (from the PM's Department) is parked at state development offices in the various states, and it is the officer who is responsible for allocating this money.

"Of course, BN MPs has 100 percent say on how the money is to be used but the opposition MPs have no say whatsoever in the matter," claimed Loke.

Umno division chiefs 'call the shots'

According to him, Umno division chiefs usually "call the shots" on the allocations in every Pakatan-led constituency.

"It is decided by Umno division chiefs. You should be fair to all MPs. The MPs are elected by the people. They are the ones should have the final say," added Loke.

Loke also said the state development office is not answerable to the state government as it is a unit under the Prime Minister's Department called the Internal Coordination Unit (ICU).

"But in Pakatan-led states, they changed it to another form of bureaucracy, they channel these funds to a federal development office. So everything is under the federal government.

"We have no say in how the money is being used. The Umno division chief can influence the state development officer on how the money is to be disbursed," he said.

In an immediate reaction, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Nazri Abdul Aziz said this was "normal practice".

When asked about the sudden increase in the allocations as reported, he replied: "We have money, that's why we gave out additional funds."

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