Baru: Regulated political funding is fine with me

Baru Bian

KUCHING, Oct 6:  Sarawak PKR chief Baru Bian agrees that political funding should be regulated and transparent.

He said there had yet to be a discussion on the issue among Sarawak PKR leaders, but personally, he is all for regulating political funding.

“I personally support that. Such a suggestion is already in place in some countries. To me, this is a good proposal because concept or procedure can be legalised and done properly,” said Baru, who is also the Works Minister.

He said a clear guideline should be drawn on political funding so that every individual might be open to granting their financial support to the parties they supported.

“Make a clear guideline, then everybody would be open to supporting. I have not asked Sarawak PKR’s opinion as a whole, but I am sure many would agree as long as got laws passed on that.

“NGOs (non-governmental organisations) and social activists would agree to that, I am sure,” said Baru to reporters after having a Construction Industry Development Board (CIBD) meeting with Bumiputera contractors today.

He was responding to a statement by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad yesterday, where he said the federal government had yet to find a solution for political parties to finance themselves without inviting elements of corruption and lobbying.

Dr Mahathir thus sought the public’s opinion of how this could be done in a clean manner. He pointed out that there were suggestions to adopt Germany’s model, where the government funds political parties to avoid elements of corruption.

Meanwhile, PKR National Women vice-chief Voon Shiak Ni, when contacted, said the model to fund political parties by the government had been practised by other developed countries.

“The modus operandi to use taxpayers’ money to fund politicial parties has been practised in other countries. It is done mostly in developed countries.

“For our country to follow the same system, I believe more studies need to be done to determine if the system is practical here,” she opined. — DayakDaily