Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Amusing comments on Malaysiakini site

I find the comments in Malaysiakini here on Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia extremely hilarious. They use pseudonyms by the way.



Excerpts

  • A total of 8.27 million households out of 30 million population allegedly earn below RM3,000. 
  • To have millions entitled to BR1M shows the absolute failure in gov’t policies.

First of all, 8 million applicants are not the same as 8 million recipients.

The entire 30 million population, regardless if you are a billionaire or a specialist doctor or a sales assistant can attempt and apply for BR1M, but approvals will only be given based on a fixed set of criteria by the Government.

Not all applicants earn below RM3,000.


A multi agency team goes thru every single application.

And just to give you some insights, the Finance Ministry does not only look at your income statements.

They also check you, your spouse and dependents' assets like vehicle ownership. For example, if you declare your income as RM2,000 but you drive a Toyota Camry, sorry lah, the Government knows and you are not getting any BR1M.

So, what about the higher number of recipients?

In 2012, there were 4.1 million recipients.

Under BR1M 2017, to date, there are 5.15 million applications that have been approved while 3 million more applications are being processed (not approved yet).

When we first started BR1M in 2012, it was only given to a SINGLE category - households with income of RM3,000 and below.

Under BR1M 2017, the net has widened since 2012.

  • OLD: households with income of RM3,000 and below get RM1,200
  • NEW: households with income between RM3,001 to RM4,000 get RM900
  • NEW: Youths with income of RM2,000 and below gets RM450.

This explains the higher number.

If anything, it highlights the generosity of a "bankrupt, failed" Government that has consistently been saying that blanket subsidies are removed so that more targeted assistances can be given.

You should continue to hide behind pseudonyms because your lack of knowledge and emotionally driven comments are disgraceful.




Let me highlight one more. A subscriber named Clever Voter said that "Growth of anything less than roughly 7-8 percent conservatively means we borrow to close the deficit."

Well, according to data from the Economist, there were no country that grew between 7-8% in 2016 and by the way, Malaysia is the 9th best performing economy in the world last year.

So yes, based on the 'Clever Voter Theory', everyone borrowed to finance their deficits.

For the year 2017, only India has been forecasted to achieve a growth that fits your 'clever' theory, at 7.4% while Malaysia is expected to be 7th fastest growing economy in the world this year.

A clear failure of Barisan Nasional, and it is all Najib's fault.

May I suggest, that the Clever Voter and his friends spend some time this weekend in MPH at the Economics textbook section. That will help.

Jokers.

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Tutorial for DAP MP Steven Sim

1.     Yesterday, Steven Sim wrote a lengthy article about why he wants to refer Najib to the parliamentary privileges committee here

2.     Today, in Parliament, Steven Sim was kicked out of Parliament by Tan Sri Speaker because of his persistence in pursuing it.

3.     He shamelessly created a fuss and accused Najib of misleading the Parliament in the recent Budget 2017 Speech, not knowing that it is all because of his lack of knowledge, ignorance and effort in doing his own research.

4.     Steven Sim said that the development expenditure for the Communications and Multimedia Ministry for 2017 is expected to be about RM495 million. But Najib announced RM1 billion for upgrading broadband infrastructure.

5.     As a policymaker and the Director of the famed and "reputable" Penang Institute which takes pride in their researches, I expected more from Steven Sim. Now, he is sending a signal to the nation that perhaps Penang Institute is nothing more than a collection of 'talent' worse than what we can find in a neighborhood college.

6.     The Federal Budget is called the Supply Bill. That is why in any of the Prime Minister's speeches, he will always start off with the title "Rang Undang-undang Pembekalan".

7.     Article 100 of the Constitution says that


"The expenditure to be met from the Consolidated Fund but not charged thereon, other than expenditure to be met by such sums as are mentioned in Clause (3) of Article 99, shall be included in a Bill, to be known as a Supply Bill, providing for the issue from the Consolidated Fund of the sums necessary to meet that expenditure and the appropriation of those sums for the purposes specified therein"



8.     The keyword here is Consolidated Fund. Now what is the Consolidated Fund? It is clearly stated in Article 97 (1) of the Constitution.

"All revenues and moneys howsoever raised or received by the Federation shall, subject to the provisions of this Constitution and of federal law, be paid into and form one fund, to be known as the Federal Consolidated Fund"



9.     The consolidated fund is strictly money that is received by the Federation. Corporate taxes, personal income taxes, proceeds from sale of Federal Government owned assets, proceeds from sale of Federal Government owned shareholdings in entities, and many many more will come here.

10.     In the Malaysian Government, we also have statutory bodies. The agencies (I repeat, agencies) were established with specific roles, usually to cater to industry requirements and for their development.

11.     Examples of statutory bodies in Malaysia include

a)     Penang State Government's Penang Development Corporation

b)     Federal Government's RISDA, Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB), the Malaysian Multimedia and Communications Commission (MCMC) and many others.

12.     Statutory bodies are established by law - Akta/Act - in the Parliament or State Assembly. This also means that the objectives, the governance structure and the articles in the Act have been studied thoroughly and debated in Parliament or State Assembly.

13.     Under the Communications and Multimedia Act 1988, a fund was established under the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC). This is clearly stated under Article 38(1) of the Act.

"There is hereby established a Fund to be known as the "Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission Fund" to be administered and controlled by the Commission."



 14.     Let us be clear on governance also. The Commission consists of:

a)     a Chairman
b)     three members representing the Government
c)     not less than two but not more than five other members.

15.     In 2002, MCMC then established the Universal Service Provision fund under the Act. Any telecommunications company whose weighted net revenue exceeds RM 2 million will have to contribute 6 percent of their earnings from designated services to the USP fund.

16.     Again, the USP fund is governed under the Communications and Multimedia Act 1988 and it is used for various initiatives like providing broadband infrastructure with speed of up to 20Mbps (as announced in the 11th Malaysia Plan and in the recent Budget).

17.     So why is Steven Sim accusing Najib of misleading the Parliament when clearly you have not done your homework? Najib announced a project on behalf of the fund, on top of expenditures of the Consolidated Fund for Budget 2017 as stipulated under the Constitution. Is that illegal?

18.     Let me point out another agency that I am extremely familiar with - the Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB).

19.     MPOB was established in 1998 by law that was approved in Parliament. Refer to Akta Lembaga Minyak Sawit Malaysia 1998.

20.     It is public knowledge, except to Steven Sim I'm sure, that Malaysian Palm Oil Board collects cess (a form of tax on industry), and uses it for the development of the industry - research on genomics, developing better yielding planting materials, branding and marketing forums, and others.

21.     Article 32 (1) of the Act clearly says that

"Maka adalah ditubuhkan, bagi maksud Akta ini, suatu kumpulan wang yang hendaklah dikenali sebagai "Kumpulan Wang Lembaga Minyak Sawit Malaysia", yang hendaklah ditadbirkan dan dikawal oleh Lembaga".






22.     The governance of MPOB is even more respectful. The Board consists of:

a)     a Chairman
b)     the Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities
c)     the Ministry of Finance
d)     FELDA
e)     smallholders representative
f)     oil palm producers representative
g)     refiners representative
h)     mills representative
i)     oleochemical industry representative
j)     4 additional industry representatives appointed by the Minister
k)     Director General of MPOB

23.     It is also a practice in this statutory body where they have annual consultation on their Budget with the industry, with not a single expenditure hidden.

24.     Their annual expenditure is not governed by Steven Sim or Parliament. It is governed by the Act and industry members, similar to all other Statutory Bodies in the country - be it state or Federal.

25.     So, what is Steven Sim trying to prove? His intellectuality or lack of it? Steven Sim clearly did not read enough and have not been paying attention in Parliament.

26.     I am also unsure if he is learning anything from his unjustified stint in Penang Institute, a body under the State Government.

27.     I have a few words of advice for DAP - gag Steven Sim. He is causing DAP to lose the 1 million strong votes from civil service and industry members who know about these facts.

28.     The entire nation is laughing at you, Steven.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Why investigate Najib, Speaker?

Let me begin by asking, when will the media stop reporting Ong Kian Ming's statements?

Earlier today, Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia said that he will investigate claims that Najib misled the Parliament with his Budget 2017 speech.

It was in response to a motion filed by DAP Bukit Mertajam MP Steven Sim against the Prime Minister.

Apparently Steven Sim and my favourite MP Ong Kian Ming cited an example where Najib said  Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission will receive an allocation of RM1 billion to improve the quality of broadband services and expand coverage nationwide BUT the Communication and Multimedia Ministry, MCMC's parent Ministry, has a line item of RM57.5 million as “development expenditure” for a “Broadband Project”.

For transparency, here's the budget speech line that Najib said


"207. At the same time, Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) will provide RM1 billion to ensure the coverage and quality of broadband nationwide reaches up to 20 megabytes per second."






Here's the Federal Expenditure Document for the Communication and Multimedia Ministry which Steven and Ong Kian Ming referred to.


Zoom in to the last line:



Looks like Najib screwed up? I don't think so.

Let me make it clear here that the Budget was prepared by thousands of civil servants and combed through thoroughly by the Prime Minister, Second Finance Minister and the main man - Treasurer General. In fact, preparations begin every year as early as March.

No one, I repeat, no one, make mistakes when it comes to the Budget. Those in the due diligence line can be charged, suspended or sacked.

In this case, there are only two people who misled the August House - Steven Sim and Ong Kian Ming.

I do not have details on the Communications and Multimedia Ministry but based on my knowledge, there could be two reasons.

1. It is a staggered investment by the Government. OR

2. Here's probably why - the Universal Service Provision (USP) fund.

The USP fund was established under provision of Section 204 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998. (Here's the Law, here's the latest Annual Report)

The implementation of this law started many, many years ago. It started off with a RM30 million fund by the Government in 2002.

Any telecommunications company whose weighted net revenue exceeds RM 2 million will have to contribute 6 percent of their earnings from designated services to the USP fund.

In fact, during Rais Yatim's days, it was heavily discussed in the media and by senior bloggers like Rockybru, politicians such as Wee Choo Keong.

A fair question next - what is this fund used for?

It is used primarily to provide access to communications in underserved areas and to underserved groups. In simple terms, broadband penetration and mobile network coverage.

However, the Fund has also been used for various other initiatives such as to upgrade our facilities (ie not just coverage lah, quality too).

Take for example, if you look under Suburban Broadband (SUBB) initiative, the  USP fund is used to provide broadband infrastructure with speed up to 20Mbps in suburban and rural areas by upgrading the exchanges, the core network and the cabinet.

Again, in simple terms, it means that the cabling and communications tower will be able to provide better internet connections and speed.

Now, who misled the public and the Parliament?

Not too long ago in May, Ong Kian Ming actually wrote about USP here: http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/339882

And not too long ago on 21 May 2015, this 20 megabits per second story was spelled out in the 11th Malaysia Plan, page 7-28.



Takkan dah lupa dan tak baca? Was it the time when you were photographed to be sleeping in Parliament?

And today you claimed that the Prime Minister misled the Parliament?

Countless times we have seen Ong Kian Ming create drama only to be embarrassed the next day. Yet, the media continue to entertain him and publish his nonsensical statements despite his poor credibility over the years. And today, even the Speaker fell into his trap.

Tan Sri Speaker, the only ones who misled the August House were both Steven Sim and Ong Kian Ming.