Today in Parliment, our Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib presented his 2011 budget. As before , the theme and message is always a ” people’s budget” . It is again a mix bag of spending, development plans, incentives, etc , a repackaging of old wine in a new bottle. What immediately strike me was his announcement of building another mega skyscraper , a 100 storey tower which will eclipse the Petronas 88 storey tower. Permodalan Nasional Berhad will build the tower and the cost is estimated at RM 5 billion. This RM 5 billion takes up 2.3 % of the national budget of RM 212 billion.
Do we need another iconic skyscraper ? Postively and a resounding YES. What else can Najib show his legacy as Prime Minister of Malaysia ? Najib is well known for his words but poor execution of his ideas. It is not entirely his fault as he has poor support from his Cabinet Ministers especially his Deputy. Well this magnificent 100 storey tower will now be concreted in the ground , a manifestation of his premiership.
How will this RM 5 billion benefit us , the rakyat of the country ? It is blatantly obvious that it is again a project which will benefit those politically connected – those UMNOputras , MCA and MIC politicians. The RM 5 billion could be better used for projects that will benefit the common folks – improve the transport system of Kuala Lumpur, build new and upgrade hospitals, widen and improve trunk roads, more schools for the rural folks, training and improve skills of the less educated, improve security, more scholarship for students, etc etc
Just look at the last proposed 10th Malaysia Plan , most of the major projects listed could benefit from additional disbursement from this RM 5 billion.
Dr Mahathir , your iconic Petronas Towers will soon be dethroned by Najib’s Menara Warisan. It will soon cease to be on postcards, tourists brochures, images representing Malaysia, T shirts, gift items and souvenirs etc. Will Dr Mahathir keep quiet about this ? I don’t think so.