KUALA LUMPUR : Warisan president Shafie Apdal took a dig at Pakatan Harapan over the memorandum of understanding it signed with Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s administration.
Speaking in the Dewan Rakyat, Shafie (Warisan-Semporna) commented on the values of politicians.
“The opposition has said that the Sheraton Move stole the people’s mandate, and yet we are now working with them,” he said while debating the motion of thanks on the royal address.
“Where are the values in our life? As leaders, we need to have clarity (on this),” he told the MPs present.
Shafie said he did not want to be part of the MoU. “If I sign the MoU and if the government of the day fails, I will also fail. The rakyat are watching.”
He said Malaysia could have been a perfect example to showcase how different races could live in harmony. “Without looking at race and religion, we could have united the country. That would have been the way forward.”
But, he said, politicians were driven by “greed and lust” to obtain positions.
Reminding them that an individual could not take his wealth to the grave, he said: “We are born poor and we will die poor. You can’t bring along anything with you (to the grave).”
On Budget 2022, Shafie said he would support it if the funds were spent “wisely” and if it was people-friendly and benefited the country.
Touching the ‘nerve’ of the economy
He said the unemployment rate in Malaysia was worrying with more than 770,000 laid off, and there could be many more millions without jobs.
He reminded Putrajaya that almost 70% of its revenue was from the private sector, which had seen companies struggling as a result of the pandemic.
The RM500 billion stimulus packages announced by the previous government, he said, had mostly come from the rakyat’s savings, including their contributions to the Employees Provident Fund (EPF).
“There is a need to know the outcome from every penny spent, how it has helped in job creation. If we spend RM100 million, how many jobs can we create from that amount?”
He said it was not enough to just give assistance to the M40 and the B40 income groups, but “the government needs to touch the nerve of the economy”.
For instance, it could assist retail outlets to pay their electricity bills and rentals. “The owner can then retain jobs for his staff. This is about creation of jobs,” he said.
He also urged Putrajaya to look into the plight of SMEs.
By : Minderjeet Kaur – FMT