PETALING JAYA: Former Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad says all MPs from his new party, Pejuang will reject the 2021 budget. It is because the government has not considered the opinions given to improve the budget.
He also accused the government of bullying MPs by claiming that civil servants and frontliners are not going to be compensated by opposing the budget.
“They are trying to create anxiety among the rakyat by saying that if the budget is not approved, the rakyat will not receive financial assistance,” he said today in a post on his blog chedet.
Four MPs Pejuang
There are four MPs in Pejuang. Namely Mahathir (Langkawi), Mukhriz Mahathir (Jerlun), Amiruddin Hamzah (Kubang Pasu) and Md Salleh (Sri Gading) Shahruddin.
Mahathir said users of social media have protested about the budget tabled on Nov 6 by Finance Minister Tengku Zafrul Aziz.
I have already clarified that even if the budget is not accepted, the payment of civil servants’ wages, pensions and allowances to frontline operators will not be prevented.
“When it comes to the financial assistance promised to the Rakyat, it is the same,” he said.
Mahathir also stated that only until January 2021 had the government allocated allowances for frontliners, but had not told the individuals as such.
He further slammed the government saying it was practising double standards for everyone entering the peninsula from Sabah on the issue of the 14-day quarantine.
“The Rakyat are the victims. They are punished if the rakyat does not obey the laws. However, if there are politicians who support the government, they are released,’ he said.
He was thought to be referring to the case of Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Jeffrey Kitingan. After being quarantined from Nov 12 to Nov 23, was said to have obtained a release order from the Ministry of Health and had his wristband cut by the Lembah Pantai District Health Office.
Government Losses Its “Legitimacy”
The current government loses its “legitimacy” if the budget is not accepted, Mahathir said. Because it did not have the majority to pass the budget.
But as the Covid-19 crisis faces the country, he said the Yang di-Pertuan Agong could nominate a majority-supported person in the Dewan Rakyat to be the new Prime Minister and appoint a new Cabinet.
Meanwhile, Mahathir said ministers and deputy ministers must take a pay cut in an interview with a women’s group in Terengganu via Facebook Live today.
He argued that this was because these ministers and deputy ministers could not conduct the full scope of work needed for their positions with Covid-19 constraints. However, they still earn the full salaries.
The budget should also look at foreign employees who can not pay for swab tests, he said.
Since they are not our citizens, we will still be affected by whatever happens to them.
“One of the reasons for the spread of the virus is that many foreign workers live in crowded places. There are 15 to 20 people within a room ,” he said.
Mahathir said there should be more women MPs on women’s involvement in politics, as at present the rate is about 15 percent, which is 32 out of 222 MPs.
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