KUALA LUMPUR, May 27 — Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today posted a congratulatory message to politicians who were made heads of government-linked companies (GLCs) recently, adding that their appointments were to ensure that the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government’s policies and “aspirations” were implemented.
Taking to his Facebook page this evening, Zahid congratulated MPs from Umno, MCA, MIC and PAS who had been appointed to head GLCs and other institutions that are owned or linked to the government.
“Indeed, in the composition of the board of directors of companies, there are appointees who are politically appointed, for the purpose of implementing the policies and aspirations of the ruling party, but I am confident that the senior management members, who are the chief executives and managing directors, were still appointed from among professionals based on merit, qualifications, experience as well as suitability with their field of work,” he wrote.
“It was the previous tradition of the Barisan Nasional government that drove the economy and developed the people’s socioeconomy, through the involvement of GLCs and GLICs (government-linked investment companies) in many strategic projects and businesses, especially infrastructure development,” he added.
Zahid also urged all the appointees of the Muafakat Nasional pact between Umno and PAS to be trustworthy and dedicated in their responsibilities.
In April, PAS secretary-general and de facto Law Minister Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan was quoted by Malaysiakini as saying all of his party’s MPs who do not presently hold positions in government will be made heads of GLCs by the PN-led government.
“PAS has 18 MPs, eight are ministers and deputy ministers, one has been made the prime minister’s special envoy to the Middle East.
“This leaves nine more MPs. Alhamdulillah, I understand all government MPs will be given the responsibility to manage GLCs.
“This is because all of them are qualified. They are MPs,” he was quoted as saying to journalists at Kompleks Kota Darulnaim in Kota Baru.
Ironically, later that same month, Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Khaled Nordin issued a stern reminder to his PN colleagues, that it is not a government mandated by the people, as he criticised the use of “political rewards” to keep the frail coalition intact.
In a sharply worded statement levelled against allies Bersatu, Khaled said PN remains devoid of legitimacy, and that it could only garner public support through good governance and accountability.
Previously in March, the Pakatan Harapan (PH) Presidential Council called upon the PN administration to stop looking into political appointments and focus on the fight against the Covid-19 outbreak.
In a joint statement, DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng, Amanah president Mohamad Sabu and PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said the government’s recent action to sack appointees from government entities like Majlis Amanah Rakyat (MARA), Federal Territories Resident Representative Council (MPP) and National Welfare Foundation (YKN), among others are inappropriate.