The opposition claimed that Budget 2018 which will be tabled by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak on Friday is ‘gula-gula pilihanraya” or to bribe the rakyat.
This is definitely not true.
Let us take a look at why Budget 2018 is not “gula-gula pilihanraya.”
BR1M is not “gula-gula”
The opposition claimed that BR1M is to bribe the rakyat ahead of the 14th general elections which is now widely expected to be held by March, April or May next year.
This is not true.
BR1M helps almost all the rakyat to meet the rising cost of living.
A household income of less than RM3,000 a month gets a BR1M of RM1,200.
A household income of between RM3,000 and RM4,000 gets RM900.
A bachelor who earns less than RM2,000 a month gets RM450.
So what is wrong with BR1M?
BR1M is good as it helps the rakyat.
Even developed countries have BR1M
The opposition claim that BR1M is corruption.
This is not true.
Even developed countries such as the US and the UK have their own BR1M to help their people such as the homeless and the poor.
But of course over there they are not called BR1M but food coupons or stamps.
So there is nothing wrong with BR1M as it is a way for governments to help its people.
The GST is paid by the rakyat
The opposition claim that the GST is paid by the rakyat.
This is not true.
The GST is paid by everyone including more than 320,000 companies who did not pay tax before.
As an example, the mamak shop owner would previously collect the sales and service tax.
But they never declare it to the Income Tax Department.
Under the GST, all businesses now have to pay GST.
So it is not true that GST is entirely paid by the rakyat.
Some of the GST is paid by companies.
GST saved the economy
The opposition said the GST has made life difficult for the rakyat.
This is not true entirely.
Please bear in mind that it is the GST which saved the economy in 2015.
If it had not been for the GST, our economy would have suffered.
This is due to the weak oil price which halved more than 50 percent to US$40 per barrel from US$100.
Without the GST which is expected to total RM42 billion this year.
The economny would be even worse.
So the GST has saved the economy.
GST money is not used to pay 1MDB
The opposition claim that the GST money is used to pay the 1MDB debts.
In his blog entitled My Vision for Malaysia on October 24, Datuk Seri Najib said this is an absolute lie.
Datuk Seri Najib said the GST is a replacement for the sales and service tax.
The money collected has helped Malaysia stay clear of recession and helped the country to grow.
Foreign direct investors still coming to Malaysia
The opposition claim that foreign direct investments is not coming into the country and that Malaysia is a failed and bankrupt country.
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Abdul Rahman Dahlan said economic data prove that the opposition has spread lies about the condition of the country.
He said foreign direct investments into Malaysia has increased to RM47.2 billion in 2016 compared to RM23.9 billion in 2008.
So the opposition is spreading lies.
Government not bribing the government servants
The opposition said Budget 2016 is bribing the 1.6 million government servants.
This is not true.
This is because although the government servants have received some goodies in the past, but in previous budgets they have received little.
In fact, government servants last saw their salaries revised in 2012.
According to a Reuters report, Datuk Seri Najib has said that civil servants can expect “good news” in the 2018 budget.
Budget 2018 is causing household debt to get worse
The opposition claimed that the household debt is getting worse.
This is not true at all.
In fact, The Statistics Department announced on October 9 that the household income has improved 6.6 percent to RM5,228 in 2016 from RM4,585 in 2014.
What does this mean?
It means that generally, the income of the rakyat and the economy is getting better.
So the opposition’s claim that the household debt is getting worse is not true.
Government’s Budget 2018 is cruel for cutting subsidies
The opposition said the government does not care for the rakyat as it has cut subsidies.
In this world and age, subsidies is no longer feasible all around the world.
The government cannot afford to give subsidies totalling billions of ringgit anymore.
This is because it is not sustainable.
Further more, international investors do not like subsidies.
If the government does not cut subsidies, investors will not come to Malaysia.
And this will be bad for our economy.
So subsidies have to go.
Budget 2018 is wasteful as it helps the rakyat buy smartphones and laptops
The opposition claims that Budget 2018 is wasteful as the rakyat spends on smartphones and laptops.
What is wrong with that?
In this digital economy, smart phones and lap tops help the rakyat to become proficient in information technology.
Smart phones and gadgets will help empower ther rakyat to gain knowldege.
With knowledge, they can get higher salaries and provide a better life for their families.
Budget 2018 is praised by the International Monetary Fund
Malaysia as well as Budget 2018 and all the previous budgets is endorsed by respected and established organisations in the world such as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
The IMF has projected Malaysia’s gross domestic product to grow 5.4 percent next year from 4.2 percent this year.
Observers from all over the world comprising ambassadors and special messengers are also invited to Parliament to witness the Budget 2018.
So Malaysia’s budget is transparent, credible and sincere aimed at helping out the rakyat.