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Political Funding Reform Pointless, BN Disrespects Democratic Principles

Speakers at a forum last night listed down reasons why Putrajaya's attempts at political funding reform will not be effective, and these lie in the fact that the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) lacks certain basic democratic ideals.

A big set back is the practice of patronage which drive politicians to seek money at the risk of compromising principles, said PKR's Kelana Jaya MP Wong Chen.

Other examples of BN's lack of respect for democracy included discrimination in the disbursal of federal funds for opposition-held constituencies and use of government machinery during election campaigns, said PAS's Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad.

Both were speakers at a forum titled, “Political Funding or Corruption: The RM2.6 billion Question” in Petaling Jaya last night, as the government starts work on a political funding reform plan following a fund transfer scandal that involved Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Khalid, of PAS, said the clearest signs of how the BN does not respect democratic ideals compared with political parties in Western countries, was how the federal government discriminates between BN and opposition MPs when giving out development funds.

BN MPs get about RM1 million a year to carry out programmes for their constituencies.

For opposition MPs, no funds are given directly for any programme. Instead, the taxpayers money is funnelled through a special government agency which can only be accessed by Umno division chiefs in the opposition constituency, he said.

“BN does not respect that people have the right to choose their government and they don’t respect the people’s choice,” said Khalid.

PAS's Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad laments the sad state of democracy iin the country, saying how in developed nations a $5,000 donation can lead to the downfall of a politician to quit while the prime minister in Malaysia remains despite receiving RM2.6 billion into his personal account. PAS's Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad laments the sad state of democracy in the country, saying how in developed nations a $5,000 donation can lead to the downfall of a politician to quit while the prime minister in Malaysia remains despite receiving RM2.6 billion into his personal account.

BN MPs will also use their government positions to stay in power, such as how there is no caretaker government during an election besides the use of government vehicles, agencies and public funds during election campaigns.

“In Western countries, politicians from all parties believe in proper democratic practices, which includes not abusing your position. So, for example, when a politician receives even 5,000 dollars, he is forced to resign.

"In Malaysia, Najib gets RM2.6 billion in his personal accounts and he still remains in power despite the suspicious circumstances behind the transfer of such a large amount to his personal account," Khalid said.

More from The Malaysian Insider
-The Office of MP for Shah Alam-

Comments

Izuddin said…
When one speak of toppling a government, it doesnt means removing the PM or the cabinet ministers. Topping a government means resurrecting a new system totally.

Napoleon toppled the french monarcgy and installed a french republic.

Bersih is not going to throw away democratic system in Malaysia or intoduce a new system. Bersih only wants Najib removed.
All party should declare their source of financing
..? What would happen if there is foreign fund making a sponsorship with political interest...?

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