IN response to news reports of a possible Cabinet reshuffle, MCA has put forward three recommendations to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to “yield better results”.
“First, the premier must stop serving concurrently as Finance Minister. Instead he needs to appoint a new Finance Minister or appoint a second Finance Minister and finally, he ought to also remove non-performing ministers (from the Cabinet),” MCA spokesperson Mike Chong Yew Chuan said in a statement today (Oct 3).
“We believe these suggestions will be able to address major national economic challenges. Our country’s economy is currently mired in a slowdown and confronted with financial woes such as a plunging Ringgit exchange rate, soaring prices of goods without any significant increase in people’s income. These factors combined result in a burdensome cost of living.”
Chong said considering that the unity government has been in power for more than half a year, any plan to boost the economy are “clearly lacking in direction”, leading to a stagnation in national development and widespread public dissatisfaction.
“In view of this, we call on the Prime Minister to consider taking up the aforementioned options to better focus on solving national economic dilemmas,” he continued.
“By relinquishing the Finance Minister’s portfolio and instead, concentrating full time as Prime Minister, Anwar will be able to focus on leading the entire Cabinet and formulation of government policies.
“He will be able to respond to key issues in a more macro and comprehensive manner and thus ensure coordination and consistency of government policies.
“At the same time, the appointment of a new Finance Minister from a professional background imbued with rich experiences will be able to boost our nation’s economy and generate more employment opportunities.”
Chong further reckoned that the appointment of a new Finance Minister from a professional background “imbued with rich experiences” will be able to boost the nation’s economy and generate more employment opportunities.
“Alternatively, if the premier appoints a second Finance Minister, this will assist in dealing with the economic quandaries plaquing our country while enabling Anwar to serve effectively as prime minister as he would be more focused on the responsibilities and work expected from a premier,” he added.
Meanwhile, Chong also pointed out the failure of “certain Cabinet members” to “perform to the expectation of the public” lands a negative impact on the country’s operations and image of the unity government.
As such, to ensure that the nation’s circumstances and the people’s livelihoods improve, Chong said it has become necessary to remove these Cabinet ministers whose performances fall “below standards”.
“In particular, Economy Minister Rafizi Ramli needs to go as he has regularly stirred controversy in recent times,” he said.
“Not only has he failed to fulfil the functions of the Economy Ministry and put forward practical strategies to improve the country’s economy but he had also urged people to cook at home instead of eating out.”
Chong was referring to Rafizi’s statement on Sept 18 where the minister had linked the financial problems faced by Malaysians to their “addiction” to eating out, saying this is why they have a tight disposable income.
“When it comes to food, as a minister, (Rafizi) has no understanding of people’s hardship on the ground,” he remarked.
Another minister that has to be “shown the door”, according to Chong, is Agriculture and Food Security Minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Sabu, whom he had blamed for the recent shortages in eggs and rice in the country.
“Ever since he took office, Malaysia has witnessed successive outbreaks of eggs and rice shortages. Not only did he botch preventing these problems from occurring but he also failed to address the sharp price hikes in people’s daily essentials,” he lamented. – Oct 3, 2023
Main pic credit: The Star