The state expects Budget 2017 to be less than satisfactory because the national economic situation is not very encouraging at the moment, says Minister of Public Utilities Datuk Dr Stephen Rundi.
However, the state was confident that it could carry on with transforming the rural areas and the economy with its available fund without being too dependent on federal allocation.
He described Budget 2017 tabled by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in Parliament yesterday as a ‘continuity budget’ focusing on development programmes that had been drawn in previous year. He insisted that the state could not be so hopeful for better ‘goodies’ but understood the situation the country was in now.
He cited allocation for replanting oil palms and improving planters’ income and plantations as well as fund for furthering the development of Pan Borneo Highway as examples of those continuing development programmes. (more…)
The DAP’s Lim Kit Siang has decried the lack of reference to the 1Malaysia Development Bhd scandal when Prime Minister Najib Razak delivered the budget estimates for 2017 on Friday.
In a media statement today, the DAP adviser said it was “sad, shocking and most embarrassing” that there is not a word about the 1MDB scandal.
“This is Najib’s denial syndrome at its worst”, he said.
He rebutted Najib’s description of an opposition demonstration in Parliament yesterday as an embarrassment, saying that it was Najib who had embarrassed himself with his budget speech, which had “not a word of refutation” about Malaysia’s infamy as a result of US Justice Department suits under its Kleptocracy Asset Recovery Initiative in July.
“In fact, there is not a word about Malaysia’s fight against corruption in the 2017 Budget despite the backdrop of Malaysia’s newly-acquired international infamy as a global kleptocracy,” Lim said.
He said Parliament must bear part responsibility if Malaysia fell in ranking on the Transparency International corruption perception index for 2016 to be published in December, for pretending that the 1MDB problem does not exist.
Source : FMT Reporters Online
Many of the policies announced under Budget 2017 were populist and intended to placate voter segments crucial to Barisan Nasional (BN), analysts said.
The increase in the 1Malaysia People’s Aid (BR1M) cash handout programme and incentives for civil servants were clear indicators that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had tabled a federal budget with the elections in mind, according to pundits polled by Malay Mail Online.
“It can be considered as populist as they still try to give something back to the critical segments despite the constraints the government is facing,” Ibrahim Suffian, director of independent pollster Merdeka Centre, said.
“I think there were plenty of signals to indicate that he is preparing for elections…you can see that the budget was intentionally holistic,” Samsu Adabi Mamat, analyst with Universiti Teknologi Mara, told Malay Mail Online. (more…)
An allocation to upgrade 30 dilapidated schools in Sarawak in Budget 2017 only meets 16 per cent of the overall needs.
Minister of Welfare, Women and Community Wellbeing Datuk Fatimah Abdullah said there were 486 dilapidated schools throughout Sarawak and 183 of them were categorised as ‘worst than others’.
“We need to upgrade all 183 dilapidated schools. They cannot wait. The allocation for only 30 schools does not even constitute half of the schools that urgently need repairs and upgrading.
“We have earnestly hoped that there will be allocation for all the 183 schools. Somehow, we already knew that realistically, that would not be quite possible,” Fatimah said when contacted for her response to the 2017 Budget announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in parliament yesterday. (more…)
Public universities will see their combined operating budgets for 2017 slashed by about 19 per cent, or RM1.5 billion, a bigger cut than this year’s budget.
Out of the 20 public universities in Malaysia, 10 of them will be facing massive cuts ranging from over 10 per cent to over 31 per cent ― including many top-ranking institutions ― under Budget 2017 announced yesterday.
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) suffers the biggest reduction in operating expenditure in terms of percentage with a 31.16 per cent drop from 2016 allocations, but Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) will be losing the most in terms of value with RM563 million wiped out from its operating budget. (more…)
The government has sufficient funds for disbursement to the target groups in Budget 2017, says Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
He described as baseless, the assertion by Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin that Budget 2017 could not be implemented because the government did not have the means.
“In the budget preparation, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak who is also Finance Minister engaged with various quarters to obtain feedback on sectors and target groups.
“For such purpose, several consultations were held not only with the Finance Ministry and National Treasury but also the private sector, banking and research institutions and so on. (more…)
Budget 2017 is a disappointment for Sarawakians as there was no increased allocation to help the state catch up with development in Peninsular Malaysia, Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) president Dr Sim Kui Hian said yesterday.
“This Budget again shows that Sarawak has to ‘compete’ for the goodies with other 12 states. That is the exact reason SUPP wanted Sarawak’s constitutional position as one of the founding regions of the federation of Malaysia to be restored,” he said.
However, Dr Sim said the party was pleased that Budget 2017 is people centric and the government has set aside allocation for a series of subsidies for street lights, road maintenance, water and power supply and laid out programmes to increase the people’s disposable income.
“We are especially glad with the government’s persistent efforts in helping our young generation through new incentives in PR1MA housing programmes as announced in the budget,” he said.
The SUPP president also pointed out that there was no allocation to boost domestic flights and international flights in Sarawak.
He said air connectivity is essential to its socio-economic development especially for the tourism industry.
Source : The Borneo Post Online
Bersih 2.0 chief Maria Chin Abdullah questioned today why the ethnic Chinese dominance of the Bersih 4 rally should be seen as a problem.
She acknowledged that the overnight rally held in August last year consisted of a Chinese majority, but stressed that there were also Malays and participants from other races.
“So what if more of one race ― aren’t Malaysians allowed to speak?” Chin said on her Facebook page.
She elaborated on the impact of the electoral reform group’s four previous demonstrations that were among the biggest in Malaysia’s recent history, drawing thousands to the streets. (more…)
An MP has called for competition in supplying free tablet computers to the country’s 430,000 teachers.
Sungai Siput MP Dr Michael Jeyakumar Devaraj said the government should give teachers vouchers with which the teachers could buy the tablet computers themselves.
Otherwise, he feared that companies having “a relationship with the government” would be given the contract to supply the tablets to the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission, which will provide them to teachers.
“It is a good budget, but maybe they are giving them to companies who might be tied to the government. I won’t be surprised if the tablets are of low quality, are not of standards and are a waste of money,” he told FMT in response to the budget speech yesterday. (more…)
It is insulting to call others shallow, but there is no better word to describe those without depth of character. Sadly, many in our society are just that.
A local humanitarian, Kuan Chee Heng, has gone out of his way to help the less privileged for the past 14 years. But he was criticised for wearing shorts when delivering aid to a poor family.
The Community Policing Malaysia president gained recognition for his good deeds when a photo of him buying food for a poor family went viral on the social media in June.
The woman, he helped, was left in the lurch by her husband. Her nasi lemak business came to a halt after her car was damaged in an accident. Kuan, who came to know of her plight, not only bought dinner for her family, but also paid their house rent, electricity and water bills. (more…)
Property valuers criticised today Budget 2017 for failing to address the slowdown in the property market.
House buyers, however, rejoiced over the federal budget announced today, lauding Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak for not heeding calls from developers to relax cooling measures previously introduced to stem excessive speculation on house prices.
“We had expected that 2017 Budget to come up with the following measures ― to re-introduce DIBS for first time buyers only and confine the purchase of the house up to RM400,000 and impose conditions of penalty if they sell the property within five years to prevent speculation; all the government departments/ agencies and GLCs to come out with a plan to identify their surplus lands for joint ventures with developers to build affordable housing,” the Association of Valuers, Property Managers, Estate Agents and Property Consultants in the Private Sector (PEPS) said in a statement.
DIBS refers to the Developer Interest Bearing Scheme that allows buyers not to service their loans throughout the construction period as it is is borne by developers instead. (more…)
Sarawak DAP chairman Chong Chieng Jen has questioned why leakages of budget allocations had not been addressed when the Prime Minister, Najib Razak, tabled the 2017 Budget yesterday.
He said there was no point in talking about billions in allocations when as much as 60 per cent might end up in the private pockets of corrupt officers and politicians.
“Yet, Najib completely ignores these problems in his budget speech,” he said today.
Recently anti-corruption officials alleged that as much as RM2 billion could have been siphoned off in leakages from a total of RM3.3 billion in federal allocations for the Sabah Water Department. (more…)
Najib Razak presented the nation’s 2017 budget in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday amidst boisterous opposition. Half-way through the budget presentation, members of the opposition staged a walkout.
Najib simply lacked the manners and the decorum to provide a professional presentation. Throughout his speech, he made jokes, made fun of the opposition and ridiculed their leaders for criticising the government on various policies. By reliance on these externalities, the budget was robbed of its seriousness as a national document.
It does not take education in rocket science to say that the budget was for all intents and purposes meant to provide goodies and sweeteners for the general population in preparation for the coming general election.
The budget was a populist one intended to placate certain particular segments of the society for the government to win the elections. (more…)
Red Shirts leader Datuk Jamal Md Yunos accused Bersih 2.0 today of assaulting their own supporter in Sabak Bernam and media personnel in Kuala Selangor, even though the victims have blamed his movement for the attacks.
News portal Malaysiakini reported Jamal as claiming that the attacker in Sabak Bernam who kicked a Bersih supporter on a motorbike had impersonated the Red Shirts by wearing a scarlet T-shirt.
“I wish to state that the violence and provocation before this is by Bersih.
“The motorcyclist in yellow who was kicked from the back, (the attacker) was hired by Bersih, to wear the same T-shirt that we wear,” Jamal was quoted saying after a counter-rally against the Bersih convoy in Kapar. (more…)
Syarul Ema Rena Abu Samah, better known as “Ratu Naga”, has joined PKR Wanita, hoping to “redeem herself”.
Speaking at a press conference today, Ema said that she chose PKR over other parties because she had made many “wrongdoings”.
“To me, it doesn’t matter if I join PKR, DAP or whichever opposition party. I chose PKR only because I have made many mistakes here, and I want to redeem myself,” said Ema.
PKR Wanita Chief Zuraida Kamaruddin described Ema’s membership as a positive step in helping PKR Wanita.
“Her expertise will be very helpful to us. Maybe her ways before was a little negative, but I’m confident that she can play a big role in increasing the dignity of women, increasing the awareness on women’s policies so on and so forth,” said Zuraida. (more…)
Sarawak PKR chairman Baru Bian said today he will endorse any recommendations for Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak Tan Sri Richard Malanjum to be the next Chief Justice.
Tun Arifin Zakaria’s term as the head of the Federal Court ends in March next year after it was extended from October 1 this year.
“Aside from the fact that Malanjum has the seniority by virtue of his 10-year stint in his present position, he is a visionary who will be able to bring about much-needed reform to the judiciary,” Baru, a senior lawyer, said.
Baru, who is also the Ba’Kelalan assemblyman, said Malanjum, a Sabahan, is eminently qualified to be the Chief Justice, pointing to his sound and reasoned judgments. (more…)
The Small and Medium Enterprises Association of Malaysia is hoping that the government will double the budget allocation meant for loans to be given to Chinese SMEs.
The association’s president, Michael Kang, said the RM50 million to be channelled to SME businesses through Koperasi Jayadiri Malaysia Berhad (Kojadi) was insufficient. Kojadi is MCA’s investment arm.
“It’s definitely not enough,” Kang told FMT, adding that the association had hoped for RM100 million instead of the RM50 million proposed in Budget 2017.
However, he acknowledged the availability of another RM162 million allocated to the Malaysian Digital Economy Corporation. He said Chinese entrepreneurs could tap into this fund if they were willing to go digital.
When he tabled the budget proposals yesterday, Prime Minister Najib Razak said that apart from the RM50 million that would go through Kojadi, there would also be RM20 million for microcredit loans under the supervision of the Malaysian Chinese Women Entrepreneurs Foundation.
Source : Ho Kit Yen@FMT Reporters Online
Opposition MPs say that it was not a planned move to walk out of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s speech but that it was rather an aggravation by the PM himself and with the “permission” of the Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia, that they walked out en masse.
The MPs had earlier interrupted the PM’s Budget speech by holding up placards reading “Who is MO1 (Malaysian Official 1)”, referring to the United States Department of Justice’s investigation into assets purchased allegedly using money from 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).
When they kept disrupting the speech towards its end, Pandikar told the opposition that if they were not interested to listen to the speech, they can leave. The majority of Opposition MPs then started leaving. (more…)
A very clear message is sent in the Budget 2017, that the government seems to be more interested in shaping a country that is dependent on welfare support rather than addressing glaring issues at hand.
There were no mentions of increasing wages and not only will Malaysians be continuing to suffer from the high cost of living, important sectors such as the education and health ministry also saw drastic cuts.
Says deputy spokesperson, DAP Parliamentary Committee on Women’s Affairs, Steven Sim, one of the sectors that was cut drastically is the budget allocation for Mammogram and HPV vaccination.
Sim, also Bukit Mertajam MP, says that in 2014, it was at RM20 million and was reduced to RM2 million in 2015, to no allocation in 2016. It was however, revived after the Opposition voiced out the importance of the budget allocation. (more…)
Two MPs from DAP have expressed dissatisfaction with the way the Chinese and Indian communities are treated in the proposals for Budget 2017.
“The budget does not do much for the Chinese community,” Taiping MP Nga Kor Ming told FMT. “What the Chinese community wants is fairness and equal opportunity.”
In the proposed budget tabled in Parliament yesterday, Prime Minister Najib Razak said the government would allocate RM50 million for the development of Chinese new villages, RM20 million for micro-credit loans under the supervision of the Malaysian Chinese Women Entrepreneurs Foundation and RM20 million for loans to Chinese hawkers.
Nga dismissed these as mere “goodies” to attract Chinese voters and said Najib had shown disrespect to the community. (more…)
The Budget 2017 tabled by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak at Parliament has dashed any hope that Sarawak and Sabah would get generous grants as an under-developed region to catch up with basic amenities and infrastructural development in the Peninsular Malaysia, PKR Sarawak vice chairman See Chee How has said.
He said it was clear through the budget that the federal government had failed Sarawakians and Sabahans.
He pointed out that the prime minister and the federal government made no commitment to the specific requests made by Sarawak.
He said the increased equity in the oil and gas industry demanded by the state through higher petroleum royalty was not addressed. (more…)
PKR Sarawak strongly condemns the death threats made against Bersih 2 chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah, Bersih Secretariat member Mandeep Singh and Hakam president Ambiga Sreenevasan.
And splashing red paint on the car of Maria Chin’s son early yesterday was a new low even for these faceless cowards, its chairman Baru Bian said.
“Threats against Bersih are worsening, now taking on a terrorist slant as the doctored images show. This is hardly surprising, considering how people like Ibrahim Ali, Ali Tinju and Datuk Jamal Yunus have been treated with kid gloves by the authorities and the government leaders.
“These people become more and more emboldened with each incident. They believe they can issue threats, commit violent acts with impunity. When Ibrahim Ali called for Bahasa Malaysia bibles to be burnt, there was no action taken against him but instead excuses made on his behalf, with the Attorney-General saying it was not seditious. (more…)
An interfaith group called today for new legislation and government policies so that Malaysians would not have to go to court to correct their religious status on paper.
The Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism (MCCBCHST) welcomed the Court of Appeal’s recent decision to allow the appeal of Rosliza Ibrahim, who was born out of wedlock to a Muslim father and a Buddhist mother, for a legal declaration that Shariah courts do not have jurisdiction over her.
“The Cabinet and Parliament must take steps to formulate an inclusive policy and enact relevant laws respectively to resolve disputes faced by people like Rosliza Ibrahim,” said MCCBCHST in a statement.
“Citizens shouldn’t have to expend money or be made to go through the courts simply to have their true religious identity recognised. The administrative process to resolve such disputes must also be effective, responsive, accessible and fair,” it added. (more…)
Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) has confirmed that its MPs will not support the hudud-related bill proposed by PAS President Abdul Hadi Awang.
PRS President James Masing said he had instructed the party’s six MPs to vote against the bill.
“Our party’s stance is very clear. We are not going to support the ‘hudud’ motion by the PAS president in the current Parliament sitting,” the Borneo Post quoted Masing as saying.
“Hudud was not part of the deal when we formed the Federation,” he said adding: “It’s not in the Federal Constitution.”
Instead, he said, his party wanted Sarawak, as one of the partners in the Malaysia Agreement of 1963 (MA63) with Malaya and Sabah, to review the agreement. (more…)
Najib Razak presented the National Budget 2017 in his capacity as finance minister at the Dewan Rakyat today.
Below are the highlights:
Considerations for women, children and Islam
• Tax relief of RM1,000 for breast-feeding equipment to support working women.
• Tax relief up to RM1,000 for individual tax-payers who enrol their children age 6 and below into registered nurseries and pre-school. (more…)
Budget 2017 proved that the government is not only running out of cash, but the situation will only deteriorate further, making 2017 possibly one of the worst years for ordinary Malaysians.
Gov’t failed to meet 2016 revenue targets
Last year, Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak announced in his budget that the government expected to collect RM225.7 billion of revenue for 2016. However, the 2016 revenue has now been revised to RM212.6 billion based on the latest estimates. That represents a very substantial 5.8 percent or RM13.1 billion shortfall for 2016.
To put things into perspective, and to highlight the severity of situation, more often than not in the past, the government will collect more than they projected.
The shortfall has in turn caused lower than projected operating and development expenditure. The government now estimates 2016 operating expenditure to drop from RM215.2 billion to RM207.1 billion, while development expenditure will drop from RM50 billion to only RM45 billion. (more…)
The government has allocated RM41.3 billion to build 30 primary, 27 secondary and five fully residential schools, four Mara Junior Science Colleges (MRSM) as well as to provide basic facilities and infrastructure, this year.
Recognising the importance to empower human capital, the allocation under the Malaysian Education Blueprint 2013-2025 was aimed to improve the quality of education, as an important contributor to economic growth.
According to the Economic Report 2016/17 issued by the Finance Ministry, construction works are at the pre-execution stage as of August, this year.
The report said that RM500 million was provided to national schools, national-type Chinese schools, national-type Tamil schools, religious schools, fully residential schools, national religious assisted schools, registered Sekolah Pondok and national-type Chinese secondary schools or Conforming schools for the development and maintenance of education facilities. (more…)
Najib Razak today took on his detractors and critics of the Barisan Nasional government by challenging the oft-repeated statement that the country will go bankrupt or risk becoming a failed state.
About a quarter way through the tabling of Budget 2017 at the Dewan Rakyat today, Najib took a moment to address “the misconception and misperception that the government will go bankrupt”.
“In this regard, I would like to clarify that a government will be declared bankrupt only if it is unable to pay off its debts.
“There are three reputable international rating agencies, namely, Fitch, Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s.
“The ratings and reports from these rating agencies are accepted in assessing a country’s ability in paying off its debts,” Najib said. (more…)
The 2017 Budget today introduced a new end-financing scheme for the 1Malaysia People’s Housing programme which provides for easier and more accessible financing for buyers.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said through the scheme, financingwill be easier and more accessible to buyers with a total loan of 90 to 100 per cent while loan rejection rate will be reduced drastically.
“For instance, an applicant with a monthly income of RM3,000 will only be eligible for a loan of more than RM187,000. Through this special financing scheme, the applicant can get a loan of more than RM295,000,” he said when tabling the 2017 Budget at Dewan Rakyat, here today.
Najib who is also the Finance Minister said the application process for this scheme would be implemented from January 1, 2017. (more…)
To what extent could we push children at motivational camps? We can’t throw live snakes at them to hasten their exit from a muddy pit. That has been established after an uproar over the python incident at the Perak Civil Defence’s (APM) headquarters in Kuala Kangsar last weekend.
This extreme measure came to light, thanks to the social media. But it wasn’t the first case of adult instructors riding roughshod over children.
Back in the days when there no social media to expose the errant ways at motivational camps, the wrongful parties had gotten away scot free.
A former pupil of a primary school in the Klang Valley, who only wants to be identified as Haslinda, shares her ordeal at the hands of such motivators. Now 32, she recalls how she was ordered to kiss the road until the trainer was satisfied. (more…)
Parent Action Group for Education (PAGE) today lauded the RM90 million allocation to extend English language programmes, adding it reflected Putrajaya’s commitment to improve proficiency in the language.
Its chairman, Noor Azimah Rahim – who in the past pushed for science and mathematics to be taught in English – said the sum was “generous”.
“Parents should take advantage of this,” Azimah told FMT.
Earlier today, Prime Minister Najib Razak, when tabling Budget 2017, announced that the sum will be used for schools to implement Cambridge English, Dual Language and Highly Immersive programmes. (more…)
BUDGET 2017 Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak has tabled Budget 2017 and is currently reading out his speech.
He has described the fiscal plan as a commitment budget as opposed to one that seeks short-term political gains amid talks of an election budget and speculation that a snap election is around the corner.
For this year, the budget speech theme is “Accelerating Growth, Ensuring Fiscal Prudence, Enhancing Well-being of the Rakyat”.
Earlier, Najib, dressed in a pink baju Melayu, attended a prayer session at the Finance Ministry before heading to the Parliament building.
Infographic: Budget 2017 at a glance (more…)
An opposition MP who has filed a motion to review the Dewan Rakyat Speaker’s decision to bar questions on the Department of Justice (DOJ)’s suit has urged Prime Minister Najib Razak to support his move.
Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo said Najib should take full advantage of this opportunity as the entire government machinery and the floor of the house would be behind him.
“Where else can the Prime Minister be better equipped to explain this issue (DOJ and 1MDB) to the people but for Parliament,” he asked.
Gobind said silence on Najib’s part on a serious matter would not reflect well on him both locally and internationally.
“He should therefore, in the circumstances, as Prime Minister, step up and support the motion,” he said in a statement. (more…)
The Malaysian economy is projected to grow between four and five per cent in 2017, with growth emanating mainly from domestic demand underpinned by strong economic fundamentals.
According to the Economic Report 2016/17 released by the Finance Ministry, it would also be supported by rakyat-centric and pro-growth measures in the 2017 Budget, with better prospects for global growth and international trade on the horizon.
Programmes and measures introduced in the 2016 Budget to address cross-cutting issues have made significant progress, resulting in a gross domestic product (GDP) growth of 4.1 per cent in the first six months of 2016.
“On the demand side, private consumption and investment activities supported growth, while the supply side was driven by the services and manufacturing sectors,” the report said.
There was a brief commotion at Parliament, just before the Budget 2017 speech today, after several senior officials from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) were denied entry into the Dewan Rakyat.
“Are you serious. I am calling my KSU (chief secretary) now,” one indignant officer was overheard saying to the guard after she was denied entry.
“Talk to him. You will know who I am,” she said.
After a brief phone call, the officer was allowed in.
Several other officers from PMO also suffered the same ignominy when they were stopped at the entrance. (more…)
Rafidah Aziz has taken to Facebook to express her anger over the Auntie Anne’s Pretzel Dog issue, calling for the government to rein in people whose actions paint Malaysia in a negative light and threaten our moderate image.
Going straight to the point of the names of food being allegedly confusing to some Muslims, including tourists, Rafidah questioned such justification.
“The POINT is …WHICH MUSLIM TOURISTS ARE WE ‘CONFUSING’? TOURISTS ARE FAMILIAR WITH ‘hot dogs’ etc..and NOT likely to be confused,” the former trade minister wrote in her trademark style of emphasising some words or sentences in capital letters, which in internet lingo is also used to express anger.
However, she accepted that even if there were a few Muslim tourists who had some doubt over the food based on the name, there was no reason to cater for an “odd tiny minority, while forgetting the vast majority of Malaysians and other tourists/visitors who know what ‘hot dogs’ are”. (more…)
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced today a full waiver of stamp duty for first-time home buyers from the current rate of 50 per cent.
However, the exemption is limited to houses valued at a maximum of RM300,000 for first time home buyers for a limited time between January next year and December 2018.
“In addition, the stamp duty exemption will be increased to 100 per cent on instruments of transfer and housing loan instruments, to help reduce the cost of first home ownership, compared to 50 per cent at present.
“However, this exemption is limited to houses with the value up to RM300,000 for first home buyers and only for the period between 1 January 2017 and 31 December 2018,” Najib said in his Budget 2017 speech in the Dewan Rakyat. (more…)
In the past few days, a furore emerged when pretzel company Auntie Anne’s revealed to have been denied a halal certificate for its branches. One item highlighted for a halal certificate was the need to change the name of a product in its menu called the ‘pretzel dog’.
This has, of course, led to an open mocking session of the Malaysian Islamic Development Department (Jakim) by citizens, and even politicians from all parties.
Answering this mockery were the minister in charge of religious affairs Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom and Jakim halal division director Dr Sirajuddin Suhaimee. Both parties answered that the halal status of the branch had nothing to do with the ‘pretzel dog’ name.
Unfortunately, that isn’t right. The names of products have been changed by multiple companies in the past, perhaps facing the same dilemma. (more…)
The Opposition is forming a ‘Shadow Cabinet’? It is harder than reaching the sky.
Parti Pribumi Bersatu party chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin contemplated forming a shadow cabinet, so that the people know who would be in the cabinet if the opposition came into power.
What makes Muhyiddin thinks that his word can unlock the spell cast upon the opposition’s power struggle? This is harder than reaching the sky.
Muhyiddin’s statement revealed the truth about internal fighting within the opposition. To remain in power, the spirit of negotiation upheld by the opposition becomes non-existent on temptation of cabinet posts and powers. (more…)
Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar today described as nothing more than “a war of words” the declaration of war by Red-Shirts group leader Jamal Md Yunos against electoral reform group Bersih 2.0.
“In my opinion, it is just a war of words. However, if reports are lodged, we will look into the matter,” he told reporters after closing a diploma programme at the Royal Malaysia Police College here.
Khalid also said that the Red-Shirts group, which is a coalition of NGOs, and the Bersih 2.0 group would have to apply for permits prior to any gathering they wished to hold next month.
“Otherwise, the police will act against them,” he said.
Jamal, who was released yesterday evening after being remanded by police for two days, said the Red Shirts group would hold a large-scale protest against the Bersih 5 gathering proposed for Nov 5 at Dataran Merdeka
Source : FMT Reporters Online
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar today described as nothing more than “a war of words” the declaration of war by Red Shirts group leader Datuk Jamal Md Yunos against electoral reform group Bersih 5.
“In my opinion, it is just a war of words. However, if reports are lodged, we will look into the matter,” he told reporters after closing a diploma programme at the Royal Malaysia Police College here.
Khalid also said that the Red Shirts group, which is a coalition of NGOs, and Bersih 5 would have to apply for permits prior to any gathering they wished to hold next month.
“Otherwise, the police will act against them,” he said.
Jamal, who was released yesterday evening after being remanded by police for two days, said the red shirts group would hold a large-scale protest against a Bersih 5 gathering proposed for November 5 at Dataran Merdeka.
Source : Bernama Online
A family of rats made its home in a container of dried chillies in Giant Supermarket in Kuala Terengganu.
In the photographs by shopper Winnie Tan which went viral a few days ago, the rodents are seen nesting inside the stack of dried chillies, deep inside.
She said that there were probably ten rats huddled inside in her posting.
More than 60 kgs of the dried chilli has since been disposed and the supermarket has offered refund to those who bought the chillies between 14 and 17 October. The store closed yesterday to inspect its premises further.
In a media statement issued yesterday, GCH Retail Malaysia Sdn Bhd has assured customers that the management has taken steps to ensure the incident will not happen again. (more…)
Putrajaya’s 1Malaysia People’s Aid (BR1M) directly benefits recipients by giving them immediate cash and indirectly spurs the local economy, according to a Finance Ministry report.
“The immediate impact of BR1M is reflected by an increase in household disposable income of the B40, which in turn translates into higher purchase of essential items such as food and housing,” it said referring to the lowest 40 per cent of households by income.
“This can indirectly spur the domestic economic activities through an increase in production of consumer goods,” it said in its Malaysia Economic Report 2016/2017 that was released publicly today.
Started in 2012 as a one-off cash aid to families earning below RM3,000 monthly, the BR1M scheme has been extended to cover single individuals aged over 21 years old and earning below RM2,000, as well as households with monthly income of between RM3,000 and RM4,000. (more…)
If Najib Razak wants to leave a legacy as a responsible prime minister, he must move beyond debt to solve problems, said the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS).
The relaxation of debt ceilings for civil servants, for example, will only increase household debt, cautioned IDEAS CEO Wan Saiful Wan Jan.
Already, Malaysia’s household debt-to-gross domestic product (GDP) ratio has increased to 89.1 per cent in 2015 from 86.8 per cent in the previous year.
“Malaysia has one of the highest household debts in the region,” said Wan Saiful. (more…)
A majority of opposition lawmakers walked out during the tabling of the Budget 2017, after Prime Minister Najib Razak challenged them to do so.
“Those of you without any substance, you may leave the hall,” the prime minister said after he was heckled when he accused the opposition of creating drama.
Speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia had earlier tried to get opposition lawmakers to sit and maintain decorum after some of them stood up, holding placards which read “Who is MO1?”.
However, following Najib’s challenge to the opposition lawmakers to leave, a clearly irate Pandikar gave the same directive, urging the disinterested lawmakers to leave the august house. (more…)
A sum of RM85 million will be allocated to Permata, a programme for gifted kids involving 50,000 children under Budget 2017, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced today.
Some of the funds will be used for establishment of the Top STEM Talents Excellence Centre at Academy of Sciences Malaysia.
In addition, Institut Pendidikan Guru Kampus Raja Melewar in Negeri Sembilan and Kampus Tuanku Bainun in Pulau Pinang will be renovated to become Permata Pintar and Berbakat Centre.
Permata is headed by Najib’s wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor.
Source : The Malay Mail Online
A majority of Opposition lawmakers today walked out of the 2017 Budget presentation by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak after he made a remark about Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
After Najib referenced his predecessor without mentioning his name in Parliament, the MPs immediately stood up and interrupted his speech.
“Recently, there were allegations that the 2017 Budget is of no substance and the Government has insufficient funds.
“In fact, an Opposition leader stated that Malaysia will face a difficult economic situation this year.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, now, who is without substance? Where did the storm originate?” Najib said. (more…)
The federal government is being “overly optimistic” in its projections for next year’s revenue, DAP MP Tony Pua said today.
Pua pointed out that Putrajaya had already failed to meet its targeted revenue collection of RM225.7 billion for 2016, with the revised collection of RM212.6 billion based on the latest estimates, amounting to a RM13.1 billion shortfall.
“To put things into perspective, and to highlight the severity of situation, more often than not in the past, the government will collect more than they projected,” the Petaling Jaya Utara MP said in a statement.
“Budget 2017 proved that the government is not only running out of cash, but the situation will only deteriorate further, making 2017 possibly one of the worst years for ordinary Malaysians,” the DAP national publicity chief added. (more…)
The only reason the government was still able to project a “moderate” 3 per cent budget deficit for 2017 was because of an optimistic projection in tax revenues, said Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua in a statement.
“Budget 2017 proves the government was running out of cash,” said Pua who is also DAP National publicity secretary. “The situation will only deteriorate further, making 2017 one of the worst years for the people.”
Despite a significant drop in the Petroleum Income Tax (PITA) from RM11.6 billion in 2015 to RM8.5 billion in 2016, he said, the government expects higher oil prices and demand for 2017 and to collect RM10.6 billion.
The government also assumes an increase in Corporate Income Tax (CITA) despite no assumption in a higher economic growth rate, he added. (more…)
The annual increase of cash handouts to Malaysians under the government’s 1Malaysia People’s Aid (BR1M) scheme risks becoming a permanent entitlement, a think tank said today.
The Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS) praised Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s administration for moving away from blanket subsidies and its commitment to using targeted welfare programmes like BR1M to help Malaysians, but said the government should reduce the public’s dependence on such aid.
“However, we are astonished that the government appears to be proud that increasingly more people are depending on and in need of such welfare assistance.
“Success should be measured not in there being more people being on the programme but fewer and decreasing recipients each year to the point that we no longer need it,” IDEAS CEO Wan Saiful Wan Jan said in a statement. (more…)