Reduced allocation for Jasa to be decided by Wednesday, says Tengku Zafrul

Soo Wern Jun
·2-min read
People watch Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz speaking during the winding-up debate on the Supply Bill 2021 in the Dewan Rakyat today, November 26, 2020. ― Bernama pic
People watch Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz speaking during the winding-up debate on the Supply Bill 2021 in the Dewan Rakyat today, November 26, 2020. ― Bernama pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 28 — The government has until next Wednesday to decide how much of a cut it will make to the Special Affairs Department (Jasa) after a promise made last week in Parliament.

Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Aziz said he is still in discussion with the Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah.

“His session is on Wednesday, so by Wednesday we need to decide how big a cut (it) is,” he said in a report in The Edge.

Last week in Parliament, both Zafrul and Saifuddin told the Dewan Rakyat that they would reduce allocations for Jasa in Budget 2021.

They, however, did not state the exact amount.

Asked if this cut is to facilitate the additional spending that was announced on Thursday during Zafrul’s winding-up speech before voting for the Budget took place, the finance minister said the amount cannot be repurposed.

“No, how it works is that if you cut, you cannot repurpose it,” he said.

On whether there are any other cuts apart from that for Jasa, Zafrul indicated for now, there is only Jasa.

“So far, there’s only one that has been requested by both sides actually.

“So yesterday, I raised the motion to cut from Jasa’s side to show our sincerity,” he said.

Since the Budget was voted on last Thursday, there have been mixed reactions over whether Budget 2021 has been passed.

The Edge referred to DAP’s Bangi MP Ong Kian Ming, who was a deputy minister under the Pakatan Harapan administration, who said the Budget has not been passed.

“Technically, he (Ong)is right. So after it goes to the Senate, and the Senate can reject the Budget also.

“So, there are still a lot of levels,” he said.

Under the Budget 2021 allocation, Jasa has been allocated a RM85.5 million, which drew much criticism from the public.

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