Friday, May 28, 2010

Subsidies: If BN does not, PR should conduct referendum at least at the States it governs..

Najib says the people will be consulted and the people will decide on whether subsidies will go or not.... but there seem to be no indication that the government will be holding any referendum that will allow all people in Malaysia to have their say...what has been now is some SMS poll, which allegedly was sent to some 200,000 persons (I did not receive any such SMS - and in this time when money is tight and there are a lot of 'phone hoax' - I wonder how many will even reply. Was it send to 200,000 UMNO members...who would blindly agree with leader Najib?)

If the people are to decide, then there must be a Referendum - and all persons (not just those with handphones) will be able to vote in their decision. do a Referendum...
Meanwhile, what is Pakatan Rakyat doing about this - surely, they can do a Referendum at the states they govern, if the UMNO-led Federal Government is not going to do a national level Referendum. The government is campaigning for the removal of subsidy to prevent Malaysia going "bankrupt"...but do they people hear the other opinions too? I do not think so...Well, the Opposition must go down to the people and get their views...and communicate it back to the government....and do so before it is too late.

There are a lot of government wasteful spending which could be eliminated and save the government a lot of money, without cutting the subsidies that is really needed for the poor and the lower-income group, which is a majority in Malaysia. Subsidies for basic food items, cooking oil, cooking gas, fuel, electricity, water, sewage treatment, etc should not be removed. Likewise, the subsidies in education and healthcare must not be removed.

KUALA LUMPUR: The people will decide if subsidies are maintained or abolished but the important point is that they must fully understand the consequences of that decision, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak on Thursday.

Earlier Thursday, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Idris Jala had said that Malaysia would be bankrupt in nine years if it failed to cut subsidies and rein in borrowings.

Najib said that he wanted feedback from Malaysians and pointed out that whatever decision the people made would impact their well-being and affect the country’s future.

He added that the Government would gather public opinion on the subsidies from several groups first before making a decision on the matter.

“The question is do we want benefits for the long-term or whether we should maintain the present status quo today, but which will expose our country to certain risks.

“We want the people to know the different implications from the decision made on the subsidies.

“If we choose “A” this is the implication, or if we choose “B” this is the implication.

“This will be a transparent process because this matter is a huge issue and we want to share this with the people,” he told reporters after chairing the Umno supreme council meeting here Thursday.

Najib was commenting on Idris Jala’s statement that Malaysia’s subsidy bill was unsustainable at a whopping RM74bil last year, or RM12,900 per household. - - Star, 27/5/2010, PM: The people will decide if subsidies stay or go (Update)

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