KUCHING, June 19: Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing has come under fire for suggesting that the government use up the state’s reserves of RM31 billion before the next state election, which is due in three years’ time.
Saying Masing was gambling away Sarawakians’ future for his own political survival, Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii urged all relevant parties, especially civil servants, to report all abuses of state funds.
Masing, who is also Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) president, had reportedly suggested that Sarawak’s reserves of RM31 billion should be spent by the state government before the next state polls.
Masing reportedly argued that if the money was not spent before the election, it would be used by the new government should the ruling Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) lost power.
Appalled by Masing’s statement, Dr Yii said in a statement today that it showed ignorance of the democratic system and was an insult to the role of a government in managing resources for the good of the state, not the political party.
“First and foremost, our reserves belong to the people of Sarawak, not Gabungan Parti Sarawak, PBB (Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu), PRS or any political party for that matter.
“The government of the day is mandated by the voters to govern and manage the funds and resources of the state in trust for the people. It is not for him (Masing) or any person in power to finish up our reserves just for the sake of their own political interest or survival,” said Dr Yii.
The Bandar Kuching MP said Masing seemed to be in panic mode and lacked confidence in GPS’ ability to win in the next state polls.
“If GPS, or BN Sarawak in the past, do a good job in managing the state and bringing equitable development to the people of Sarawak, why do they need to even worry right now?” he said, and called on Sarawakians to vote out such an irresponsible leader.
Dr Yii noted that Masing’s proposal was similar in pattern to the one adopted by former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, which left the country RM1 trillion in debt. — DayakDaily