Khamis, Oktober 18, 2012


AG report won’t affect voter mindset

Political analysts say the report has little implication on BN's reputation and is not an indicator of the GE13 announcement.

KUALA LUMPUR 17/10/2012: Political analysts believe that the newly released Auditor-General’s (AG) report will not play a big role in swinging votes to Barisan Nasional or Pakatan Rakyat.

Political analyst James Chin felt that the unnecessary spending and wastage in the AG report will do little to affect public opinion.

“There is nothing new in the report. Both sides seemingly provide ammunition for the other, whereby they will pick up whatever bad things left behind for the other.

“The AG report will not place a major dent on BN,” Chin further added.

Mohammad Agus Yusoff, a UKM political science professor, said the increased government revenue mentioned in the report is good news for the country.

However, he said that revenue collected by the government is only a matter of numbers.

“The people don’t really bother about the numbers but what is more crucial to them is whether the numbers really benefit them in their daily lives.

“If it does benefit the people then it is a successful achievement for the government. The government should use this revenue as the medium to balance and pay off the national debt instead of adding more debt to the country,” he added.

Agus said the AG report is not instrumental in affecting voting trends.

“In order for the people to vote a certain party, they have to feel the impact. They have to feel that they are actually getting something that will benefit them,” he said.

Parties should be accountable

Regarding the issue of negligence and poorly managed projects which were highlighted in the report, Chin said that responsible parties should be held accountable.

He said however little will be done to address the issue.

It is usually the same thing each time. People will be very noisy about it, the typical commotion ensues but then later everyone forgets about it,” he said.

Agus agreed.

“So far there has not been any firm action taken against those who are responsible; so far there has not been any prosecution.

Usually in the initial phase, there will be noises here and there but after the noise dies down, there has not been any substantive action taken against those involved: Any follow-up action has never been done,” he said.

The AG report highlighted increased government revenue of 16.19% and improved ratings for many ministries and government agencies.

However, along with the positive reports, there were also several issues of inefficient projects and wastage of public funds.

For example, the military housing projects awarded to sub-par contractors and road construction projects in Sarawak which do not meet deadlines and are wanting in safety standards.

Not an indication of polls

Both analysts agreed that the AG report was not an indicator that the GE13 will be announced.

“We can’t solely use this AG Report as the indicator for the general election date. There are plenty more indicators that should be taken into account,” he said.

If the government gives out all the promised handouts early, then the general election should be soon but I think the government will hold the GE-13 date announcement,” he added.

Chin said that the uncertainty of the election date was an old issue.

The elections are very much supposed to be coming now, if not very soon. The AG report definitely does not have any relation to it.

Some, if not all the states are ready for the election. Even if they were to hold the elections tomorrow, it would be of no problem,” he added.

Alyaa Azhar and Natasha Lai

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