Budget 2021 must be approved to combat COVID-19 – Saifuddin

By , in Nation Politics on .

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 5 — Budget 2021 must be approved to ensure sufficient funds are available to be channelled towards the fight against COVID-19, said Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah.

He stressed that it was important to continue the efforts by the government and all parties in battling the third wave of the pandemic, with more than 30,000 people already infected.

Saifuddin, who expects a ‘brave COVID-19 Budget’, felt that the essence of the budget would not be about deficit or surplus.

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“Instead, it will contain whatever is needed must be for the benefit of the people. If there is a need to add more debt, so be it.

“What is important is that the government has sufficient funds to implement all development programmes and projects for the people’s benefit,” he said in an article titled ‘Prihatin Menangani COVID-19’ (Concerned about the fight against COVID-19) in the Tinta Minda column on the Bernama.com portal.

He explained that since the Perikatan Nasional administration was formed, it immediately made COVID-19 the main priority, with the key focus being ensuring a balance between lives and livelihood.

He said although the government had a clear idea on the plan and implementation, that did not mean that the government was not susceptible to mistakes and weaknesses.

“But everything was systemically thought out and spelled out. For example, various standard operating procedures (SOPs) were created through engagement sessions with all the relevant parties.

“The National Security Council (MKN) also discussed in detail regarding the announcement and enforcement of the Movement Control Order (MCO), Conditional MCO and Recovery MCO,” he said.

As for the country’s economy, he said the government divided the economic policy into six levels through the ‘6R’ strategy, namely Restore, Resilience, Restart, Recovery, Revitalise and Reform. 

“Budget 2021 that will be tabled on Nov 6 (tomorrow) is the fifth stage (Revitalise) and the 12th Malaysia Plan that will be tabled next January is the sixth stage (Reform),” he said.

The full article on ‘Prihatin Menangani COVID-19’ can be accessed in the Tinta Minda column at Bernama.com.


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