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Monday, July 26, 2010

Of APCO, QGA and spending sprees while the poor get poorer


Viktor Wong, Malaysia Chronicle

First, they accuse PKR advisor Anwar Ibrahim of paying CNN a large sum to obtain publicity and respect from the United States. But now, it seems Umno leaders have been doing it themselves all this while.

Just look at the lavish contract renewed with Apco Worldwide in order to enhance and promote the image of the government overseas.

But the thing is Apco's core service is only to one man. That is Prime Minister Najib Razak. Since he already has Apco to pull all the publicity stunts for him, why is he using another one now, Quinn Gillespie & Associates (QGA), a Washington-based political and public relations consultancy.

We are sure he will say "its just M50,000 not millions" if the press were to dare ask for his explanation. Yes, only RM50,000 for a trial run, and if the run is a success, will it be RM500 billion in the near future?

And since Apco's background and role are already being exposed for public scrutiny, will QGA take on the role of Apco once the latter's contract expires?

It is hard to see and hard to say now. But the very fact is that this is part of the billions of Ringgit belonging to Malaysian taxpayers that is being lavishly spent - just like that. It is like all that money belongs to Najib and Umno themselves.

No wonder the government launched the price-hikes a.k.a. subsidy cuts so suddenly. Their need must be urgent to refill the almost-empty treasury coffers before they really goes bankrupt.

So, is Bank Negara printing more money now? We are certain the process is already ongoing since they realize that they can not solely depend on price hikes (or subsidy cuts) and if they were to impose more price hikes, the people would openly stand up in full force against them.

Therefore, money-printing is their next alternative. That is why Najib started his spending spree again, this time in Sarawak, throwing millions of Ringgit in promises and pledges just to ensure the BN's victory at the upcoming state elections. But in the end, the people there are still left suffering even as the state BN leaders start to enjoy their new-found cash pile.

We would like to ask this question again - do you all still want them to govern our nation come next general election?

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