DAP asks: Where has our RM11 billion gone?
Since 2006, a secretive item titled ‘Government Contribution towards approved Agencies Trust Fund’ has appeared in the annual Sarawak Government’s budgets.
Approximately 50% of the annual state development expenditure is allocated to this trust fund.
In the year 2006, RM520,000,000 out of total development expenditure of RM1,969,822.400 was allocated to the trust fund; in 2007 RM1,257,000,000 out of RM2,294,174,000 was allocated; in 2008, the amount was RM1,719,083,100 out of RM2,864,929,300, and in 2009, it was RM1,825,061,000 out of total development expenditure of RM3,075,368,900, and for 2010, the amount allocated was RM1,072,409,800 out of RM2,776,681,600.
For the 2011 state budget, the amount allocated was RM1,416,475,000 out of the total development expenditure of RM3,630,305,950, and in the year 2012, the allocation shot up to RM1,709,463,00 out of RM3,262,759,580 of development expenditure.
And this year the state government has allocated RM1, 853,687,500 out of RM3, 407,339,183 of the state development expenditure.
The total amount allocated to the fund is RM11, 373,179,400 out of RM23, 281,380,913 of total development expenditure for the eight years of state budgets.
Despite the large amount allocated, Taib (State Finance Minister) has refused to disclose who are these so-called ‘agencies’ receiving the ‘contributions’ from the government.
All we were told is that the ‘approved agencies’ are body corporate, companies or organisations which have been approved in writing by the Chief Minister to promote the economic, social or educational advancement of the state.
It can be private companies or cronies or family companies who have received such fund. To many BN politicians, advancement of family business is often equated to ‘economic advancement of the state’. That is why hundreds of acres of State land have been alienated to the crony companies at as low as 10% of the prevailing market prices.
Why is the State Government refusing to disclose the identities of those who have received the funds?
Sarawakians have lost RM10 billion to this State budget ‘black hole’ over the last seven years and another RM1.8 billion this year.
Had this RM10 billion not gone into this black hole, the RM10 billion could be used to:
- - Upgrade Pan Borneo Highway to four-lane for the whole of Sarawak;
- - Provide 10,000 full overseas medical scholarships;
- - Build 100,000 of units median-cost houses, easing the financial burden of the people;
- - Give RM3,700 to every Sarawakian;
- - Build 20 equivalents of Sarawak General Hospital;
- - Pay 20 years of salaries for all Sarawak state civil servants ; or
- - Build 2,000 A-grade schools……
(Note: These details are in the DAP flyer and will be distributed to voters in order to raise their awareness on the blunders made by the state government. More of such flyers will be distributed from time to time as part of its campaign strategy).