KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 17 — The debate on the Supply Bill 2021 (Budget) entering its sixth day in the Dewan Rakyat today focused on various issues raised by Members of Parliament, including related to the deduction of elected representatives’ allowances, targeted wage subsidy scheme and e-hailing drivers.
Pandan MP Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail said she was confident if the office operating and Parliament community service centre fund was given equally to all Members of Parliament the opposition elected representatives would not be reluctant over the 10 per cent allowance deduction for the Covid-19 Fund.
However, the former deputy prime minister stressed that all government MPs should also be subject to the same cuts.
‘’If the office operating and community funds of the Parliamentary People’s Service Centre are given equally to all MPs, I think the opposition MPs will not be upset to cut 10 per cent to be channelled to the Fund (Covid-19), provided all government MPs are also subject to the same deduction, “she said when debating the Supply Bill 2021 (Budget) in the Dewan Rakyat today.
At the same time, she also suggested that the allowances and fees of MPs who chaired government-linked companies (GLCs) and government-linked investment companies (GLICs) be reduced by 50 per cent and channelled to the Covid-19 Fund as a corporate social responsibility initiative.
Guided by ‘leadership by example’, Dr Wan Azizah also proposed a 10 per cent deduction to the salaries of the prime minister, senior ministers, ministers and deputy ministers.
Meanwhile, Pasir Salak MP Datuk Seri Tajuddin Abdul Rahman asked the government to ensure that at least 70 per cent of local contractors are involved in the implementation of mega projects in the country to ensure the people could share the prosperity regardless of race.
“The government has allocated billions, big projects to be implemented but most of the contractors appointed are big contractors … Bumiputera does not have big contractors, (only) small contractors.
“I want the government to make sure at least 70 per cent is given to locals to be divided among the Chinese, Indians and Malays,” he said.
Seremban MP Anthony Loke Siew Fong, in his debate, suggested that the government improve the targeted wage subsidy scheme specifically for the aviation, tourism and hospitality sectors by raising the subsidy rate to 50 per cent of the monthly salary with a salary ceiling of up to RM4,000.
“The government can give priority, for example, to cabin crews in hiring contract workers in the MyStep initiative which offers 35,000 temporary employment opportunities such as nurses and medical attendants.
“Those who work as cabin crew are actually very trained in emergency response and first aid and, of course, can be placed in hospitals and health clinics,” he said.
Meanwhile, Kangar MP Noor Amin Ahmad, asked the Ministry of Transport to consult with the e-hailing operators to reduce the charges imposed from the profit earned by the drivers of the companies.
He said the move could increase the income of e-hailing drivers who switched to the job after losing their source of income following the spread of Covid-19 in the country.
“For example, if previously e-hailing companies charge 20 per cent from the driver per trip, they can reduce it to 10 to 15 per cent during this difficult period,” he said.
The sitting continues tomorrow.