ALOR SETAR, Nov 1 — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said the 2018 Budget tabled last Friday formed the basis for the plan to drive Malaysia towards achieving further development and become among the top 20 countries in the world.
In this regard, he said, the 2018 Budget was drawn up with great care to achieve the future vision for the 2050 national transformation (TN50) besides being inclusive and fair to all strata of society.
“We were engaged in meetings for hours to prepare the Budget...when we planned the budget, we based it on reality.
“This is not a drama, this is not a budget of the opposition party...this is the budget of the Barisan Nasional government which has been in power for so long,” he said at a gathering with Kedah civil servants, here today.
The Prime Minister said the government’s aspirations could be achieved because the country had a government that knew how to administer and maintain peace.
Najib, who is on a one-day visit to Kedah, the first state that he visits after tabling the 2018 Budget, said it was important to feel the pulse of the people in whatever major policy implemented by the government.
“I want the leaders to go on the ground, meet the people, listen to what they are saying because I will use them as inputs in drawing up government policies,”he said.
While criticising the Opposition party's budget, which he described as a political drama, Najib said what was tabled by the Opposition parties in their shadow budget was unrealistic such as the pledge to abolish toll collection.
“To abolish the PLUS (North-South Expressway) toll alone (will involve) an expenditure of almost RM40 billion...where to get (the money). We cannot administer the country with things that are illogical,”he said.
Similarly, the proposal by the opposition to abolish the National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) would also involve another RM40 billion, he added.
“In Islam too, when we have any debt we are obliged to pay back...when we have paid back we have fulfilled our responsibility. We (the government) can give discounts but the debt must be paid back...in the 2018 Budget, we have added further discounts to help...this is the budget based on Islamic syariah.
“It's not promise this and promise that, promise the moon and the stars...as Prime Minister, I cannot do that, I will make sure I implement whatever I have said,”he said.
The Prime Minister said that all aspirations and policies drawn up and tabled by the government would not be achieved without the support of civil servants as the implementing group.
“I consider the government officials and the government as being dependent on each other for their mutual survival...we must be together because whatever I table it is up to the implementing officials to achieve them.
“If the civil servants implement their tasks wholeheartedly, we will be able to achieve all our aspirations,”he said. — Bernama