Thursday, July 4, 2013

Drop in allocation for Pakatan-held seats?

Drop in allocation for Pakatan-held seats?
The constituency development fund for the 89 parliamentary seats under Pakatan Rakyat appears to have been reduced by between RM700,000 and RM1 million against that for the BN seats, claims DAP’s Seremban MP Anthony Loke.

NONELoke (left) attributed the information to a written reply to Parliament from Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak yesterday.

While Najib did not provide details how much each constituency has been allocated, the number of seats with a reduced allocation tallied with the number of Pakatan-held seats nationwide.

The written reply states that of the parliamentary constituencies in Peninsular Malaysia, 85 are allocated RM1 million each, while another 80 will get RM300,000 each.

In Sabah, Sarawak and Labuan, 48 constituencies are allocated RM1.5 million each, and nine are to get RM500,000 each.

“Based on the reply, it is clear that there is a discrepancy between allocations for BN and Pakatan constituencies,” Loke told a press conference in the Parliament lobby today.

In 2012, all the constituencies received RM1 million for development, irrespective of which coalition’s representative held the seat but allocations to consituencies held by the opposition were handled by federal agencies.
'It's retaliation against opposition supporters'
Loke described the discrepancy as discrimination and retaliation against voters who supported the opposition in the 13th general election.

“Najib said he wants to push for national reconciliation but his action shows otherwise.”

To Loke's question whether there was a new policy on the distribution of the development fund, Najib said 'no' in his written reply.

Loke said: “This means BN still continues the discriminatory policy against the Pakatan constituencies.

“(But) Najib is worse than (his predecessor) Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. At least Abdullah did not discriminate against the Pakatan constituencies.

“He only disallowed opposition MPs to manage the allocation and let the development departmenthe Umno division chiefs.”

Loke called on Najib to walk his talk as a prime minister for all by giving an equal allocation to all 222 parliamentary constituencies and to authorise MPs from both BN and Pakatan to manage the funds.

“If the federal government makes this change, I believe states ruled by Pakatan - Selangor, Penang and Kelantan - will implement the same policy,” he added.

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