KUALA LUMPUR, March 7 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad alleged in the Dewan Rakyat today that the ruling coalition has created redundant government agencies and paid its executives exorbitant salaries, to the point that the sum had to be concealed from public knowledge.

Raising the matter while debating this session’s royal address, the two-time former prime minister claimed these agencies were created by bypassing Parliament to avoid scrutiny and wants the government to respond.

He said the decisions were among policy decisions that violated the constitution, and are enabled because the ruling coalition has no respect “for the rule of law.” 

“The problem is this government acts as if there are laws, without referring to any laws and they make decisions that bypassed the House. As if only the government exists and Parliament doesn’t,” Dr Mahathir said.

“Then the government also sets up certain bodies with goals that can already be met by existing agencies,” the Langkawi MP added.

“These new bodies are set up without any parliamentary approval, and they tend to be headed by people whose pay is so high that it is forced to be hidden from public knowledge.”

Dr Mahathir did not name the agencies or the executives he implicated. 

The Langkawi MP led a push for reform that sought to cut emolument for executives at state-linked firms during his second tenure in a bid to curb the use of positions as political largesse, ironically a practice that flourished under his time as the country’s fourth prime minister.

Dr Mahathir controversially resigned after the party he helped set up defected and caused the collapse of the Pakatan Harapan government.

The succeeding governments resumed awarding GLC posts to allies despite public protest, insisting that the practice does not violate any laws or is prone to corruption.