As the nation’s 13th general election (known as PRU13) is fast approaching, the Barisan Nasional government continue its lavish style by splashing money away for irrelevant projects to secure their much needed votes.
One such event was Korea artist’s PSY performance in Penang. (Watch the video link).
The 7-minute performance costs the nation a whooping USD 750,000 (or RM 2 million), purportedly discounted from an initial USD 1 million appearance fees. Local artists were sidelined. At least one artist commented, “For that kind of money, the government could engage 1000 local artists for a full day!”
Although the event organizers (and PSY managers) admitted that the money did not come from the government, the reassurance did not fare well with the Malaysian public. If indeed the unprecedented 7-minute PSY performance was paid by a private company, the later would somehow have to be compensated, via the award of government projects, later. What goes around, comes around.
The BN government’s refusal to devulge the true identity of the private sponsor, resulted in wild public speculation that the former receives undertakings from the ‘underworld’.
In the mean time, the slates of lavish spendings had resulted in a squeeze in the nation’s coffers. Budgets have been cut in the critical health, education and transport industries. Public hospitals were reported to be in short supply of medicines. School textbook administrators are restless since the budget cuts had resulted in an inadequate supply of new books. Textbooks that are in deplorable conditions could not be replaced. Libraries procurement and operating budgets have also been slashed, that several libraries (Melaka State Library, for one) had to resort to renting out its already-limited space to bookstores, computer and phone shops.
Buy books and topup cards, plus repair computers in a public library? Yup, only in self-declared developed Melaka. Only in BN-ruled country, where the effectiveness of a library is not judged by the volume it carries, but by the sheer design of its building. And believe you me, Melaka’s bright green library is an absolute eyesore!
Of late, the Malaysian Income Tax Department (LHDN) had to go door-to-door, searching for potential tax evaders as its coffer begins to seriously deplete. The government’s 800,000 public service administrators will soon need to be paid. BN’s scores of cash handouts further aggrevated the nation’s financial duress. BR1M (the RM500 handout), free tyres (to taxi owners), RM200 discount to purchase smartphones, RM250 to purchase books, RM100 as a special education aid; not to mention the millions and billions of ringgit impromptu anouncements made by BN ministers.
The Najib Administration is a total nightmare. A nightmare to public administrators. A nightmare to the general public. And a total nightmare to the nation.
Hidden behind Najib’s Election Campaign is APCO’s FBC Media. The UK-based public relations company which went bust in the UK, but still actively operating, under the lavish office of a Malaysian Prime Minister-in-denial, whom the Malaysian public has yet endorsed or voted into power.
Read the Sarawak Report below:
13 Feb 2013
Cool and casual? Tony’s open neck, gold chain look sparked comment in the UK over the weekend
We can reveal that Najib Razak is still paying mega-bucks to Tony Blair’s PR people to try to make him look ‘cool’.
The same team which was previously employed through the criticised agencies APCO and FBC Media are now secretly consulting on BN’s election campaign, to prolong the party’s controversial half century in government.
Meanwhile, the former UK prime minister himself continues to be closely linked to Najib Razak and was recently engaged to make a speech at CIMB Bank’s launch of the ‘Asean Business Club’ in KL.
Tony’s minimum fee for such occasions is believed to be UK£300,000, so it is fortunate that the Chairman of the government-linked bank happens to be Razak’s own brother.
RM2million fee – but who paid?
The payment for Tony’s former team of advisors is likely also to be funded, as on previous occasions, through the Prime Minister’s office, despite the clear party-political purpose of the contract.
As ever, the team’s dubious boast is that they can ‘re-create the success’ of Blair’s election wins in the UK for Najib in Malaysia.
However, after rumours that it was their bright idea to book Psy for a BN stunt that badly backfired at the weekend, Najib may finally have had enough of their attempts to market him as a Malaysian version of the largely discredited former UK prime minister!
The RM2 million fee for the 7 minute performance turned into a spectacular own goal when the bumbling PM tried to rub off some of the pop star’s cool image for himself.
Introducing the show, which had predictably attracted a large young crowd to the BN event, Najib cried out if they wanted to see the Korean sensation? To which all 80,000 predictably yelled “Yes”.
But, when he then asked them if they wanted BN? all 80,000 equally predictably yelled “Noooo!“. The pop star himself, clearly more attuned to PR than Najib’s own PR advisors, then refused to cooperate and appear on stage with the PM either!
Instead of been made to look cool, Tony’s PR advisors had made Najib Razak look an expensive fool!
Read more here