Parliament must scrutinise stimulus package, says Anwar

PKR president Anwar Ibrahim says many questions about the stimulus package must be resolved.

PETALING JAYA: Parliamentary opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim has called for a debate on the government’s RM35 billion stimulus package to help the economy recover from the Covid-19 crisis.

The PKR president said the programme must be thoroughly reviewed by Parliament, to ensure it was properly implemented.

Anwar said that the Penjana package was akin to a national budget, given the billions of ringgit allocated to the programme, and thus must be debated in Parliament.

“Otherwise, people will only praise it but no one will be able to question it or get more details about it or see how the initiatives would be implemented,” he said during a Facebook live session tonight.

On Friday Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin unveiled the stimulus package, of which RM10 billion will be in the form of direct fiscal injections.

Penjana, which was billed as a short-term economic recovery plan, was established with three main goals: to empower the people, propel businesses and stimulate the economy.

There are 40 initiatives covering these goals, with emphasis given to supporting workers and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) through training programmes, social support, financing schemes, boosting domestic consumption and supporting industries impacted by the outbreak and MCO.

Anwar, who is MP for Port Dickson, said the public does not know the source of the RM35 billion, although the people were told not to worry over Putrajaya’s capability of spending it.

“But will we be spending it properly and ensure no leakages? Will it reach the targeted audience? These are the questions that must be debated in Parliament.”

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