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Friday, September 28, 2012

Opposition's 'shadow budget will bankrupt us' - Muhyiddin


Opposition's 'shadow budget will bankrupt us' - Muhyiddin
KUALA LUMPUR - PAKATAN Rakyat's shadow budget is simply unrealistic and unsustainable, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said.
Quoting the assessment of various economic experts, Muhyiddin questioned the opposition's plans to reduce drastically government spending on beneficial programmes and introduce populist measures, such as rewards and allowances.
"According to the economists' analyses, the opposition's budget is simply unsustainable and would slow the country's growth," he said after launching the Language and Literature Festival 2012 here yesterday.
He reminded the public to keep its focus on the government's Budget, to be announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today.
"The opposition can promise the sun and the moon, but it makes no difference in the end, as they are not in power. For them, it is simply a question of political mileage.
"But for the government, we have to take into account the country's priorities -- the desires of the people, reducing the deficit, and how to maximise the country's resources.
"We have to be realistic in our planning."
In contrast, he said, the opposition had failed to provide concrete details on how they would fulfil their promises.
"For example, they have promised to abolish tolls on certain highways.
"Yet, they have not broken down the costs involved to achieve this. They will have to take over the concessionaires, which will probably involve billions of ringgit.
"Their intentions may be noble, but they simply haven't shown how they will carry out these proposals."
Muhyiddin also criticised the shadow budget's proposal to abolish the National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN).
"PTPTN was set up to help students from low-income families, who cannot afford to continue their education and did not do well enough to secure scholarships.
"So far, the government has allocated RM42 billion to the fund, which has benefited more than one million students.
"The suggestion to abolish the fund may be attractive to those who have taken out PTPTN loans, but think of how many of our students would be unable to continue their education without PTPTN to help them."
On Pro-Aspirasi's wins in the recently concluded nationwide campus elections, Muhyiddin said he hoped the student leaders would fulfil their campaign promises.
"This is their chance to hone their skills as leaders. Let's hope they carry out their responsibility to their voters."
NST

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