MALAYSIA Tanah Tumpah Darahku


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

RM750m tag for national service

The soaring cost of running the national service programme has cast a doubt over its sustainability, according to a DAP leader.

KUALA LUMPUR: The government’s bill for the 2011 national service programme came up to RM752.9 million, which exceeded the 50% cap placed on it.

The soaring cost has raised question mark over its sustainability.

DAP Youth chief and Rasah MP Anthony Loke asked whether the programme’s ballooning cost was commensurate with its aim of promoting racial integration.

“Has integration worked with the presence of groups like Perkasa?” he asked at a press conference at the Parliament lobby here today.

In a reply to Loke’s question, the defence ministry has revealed that out of the total amount, RM723,893 million was spent on services and supply.

It also said that RM6.2 million was allocated for “assets”, RM21.3 million was spent on emoluments and RM1.48 million on payments and fixed fees including incentives to civil servants.

When the national service was first introduced, Loke said the government had put a RM500 million ceiling for the programme.

Currently, the training is for three months and there are suggestions to extend it, a move that Loke said would increase the costs of financing the programme.

He urged the government to be more transparent on its spending for national service programme and provide detailed breakdowns to avoid abuse of power.

He also called on the government to set up an independent panel to assess if the training had achieved its target of racial integration.

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