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Where is PN’s heart for Malaysia and the rakyat?

Press Statement
20th April 2021

Double Standards, Trust Deficit, And Obsessive Preoccupation With “Buying” Political Support Amongst The Main Causes For Malaysia’s Financial Problems And Fighting The 3rd Wave of COVID-19

The recent summons of RM1,500 on a matriculation student in Perak for not wearing a mask properly, whilst the Prime Minister and a Deputy Minister had escaped earlier unpunished, shows how the insidious problem of double standards has poisoned the PN administration’s effort against COVID-19. No fine was imposed on the Prime Minister for failing to wear a face mask on 31 March 2021 when walking into a hotel lobby in Putrajaya for a BERSATU meeting.

Muhyiddin caught not wearing a mask at Zenith Hotel in Putrajaya on 31 March 2021

Neither was Deputy Minister of Communications and Multimedia Zahidi Zainul Abidin punished for pulling down his face mask while attending the RTM 75 Anniversary celebration on 1 April 2021. Both Muhyiddin and Zahidi should be made an example of the government’s commitment to fight COVID-19 by being fined the maximum RM10,000. Then only can we stop the latest 3rd wave of COVID-19 infections, whose infectivity rate Rt rose to a high of 1.19 on 17.4.2021.

Zahidi Abidin pulled down his face mask while attending the RTM 75 Anniversary celebrations on 1 April 2021

Will the summons of this matriculation student be waived to save the Prime Minister and Deputy Minister from embarrassment? Public anger has mounted against double standards, where the ordinary public is punished but no action is taken or lenient punishment is meted out against Ministers like Azmin Ali, Annuar Musa, Zuraida Kamarudin, Khairuddin Aman Razali, and Edmund Santhara for violating Movement Control Order (MCO) restrictions and quarantine SOPs. Only when the government is committed to applying the SOPs impartially and without fear or favour, can Malaysia succeed in stopping the current surge of COVID-19 infections.

Double standards, trust deficit, and obsessive preoccupation with “buying” political support are also amongst the main causes for the government’s financial problems. Following Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin’s admission that the government is now short of funds, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Mustapa Mohamed has tried to whitewash Muhyiddin’s remarks, by saying that Malaysia’s financial problems are like other countries.

Mustapa is not being completely honest by failing to mention that other ASEAN countries, despite facing a large budget deficit, did not suffer an international ratings downgrade by Fitch Ratings like Malaysia did. Why is there no quick recovery from the economic recession despite PN spending RM622 billion on various economic stimulus packages and Budget 2021 until youth unemployment rose to a shocking 13.9% in February 2021?

With PN suspending Parliament and refusing to heed the people’s wishes and even the royal advice of the King to reopen Parliament, there is no necessity to answer in Parliament regarding double standards in enforcing MCO violations, nor provide proper accounting as to how the RM622 billion is spent. Coupled with the “buying” of political support for survival to remain in power, this has created a severe trust deficit that will only affect the fight against COVID-19.

Lim Guan Eng
DAP Secretary-General

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