PETALING JAYA: DAP’s parliamentary whip Anthony Loke Siew Fook has sought to clear the air over the decision made by a vast majority of opposition MPs in opting against an individual vote for the passing of the 2021 budget at the policy stage today.
Loke said if the opposition stopped the passage of the budget at the policy stage, Perikatan Nasional (PN) would play with sentiments by accusing them of disobeying the King’s advice and even causing salaries for the civil service to not be paid, among other things.
“I understand that many DAP members and supporters are very disappointed with this decision and have criticised our actions.
I apologise publicly if you feel that this was the wrong decision,” he said in a statement today adding that he will take full responsibility for having ordered DAP MPs not to stand up and request for a bloc vote.
He said this decision did not mean that the opposition supported the whole budget.
“There are things that we can agree and support, such as the payment of salaries for civil servants, special allowances for frontliners, cash assistance to the people, wage subsidies for employers.
“However, there are also many allocations that we rejected, such as the allocation of RM85 million for JASA, cutting allocations for schools and other issues raised by opposition MPs,” he said.
He added that the opposition will request for a bloc vote to reject the allocation for the communications and multimedia ministry as JASA is an agency under the said ministry.
He said the opposition parties will continue to fight in the committee stage debate on the budget from Monday.