Tuesday 30 May 2023
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KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 28): Former deputy prime minister Tun Musa Hitam said a reset in politics and government needs to come before attempts into tackling non-political issues such as the downturn economy and social issues. 

The 88-year-old told this to Economy Minister Mohd Rafizi Ramli during the "Parliament Lecture Series 1.0: Resetting The Malaysian Economy" organised by Parliament Malaysia on Friday (Jan 27). 

“It is politics in government that determines the success and failure of your promises to the rest of the country,” Musa said. 

“We need to remind ourselves that in spite of all other non-political issues, it is politics and the government that first need resetting … and this is where the reform starts.” 

Earlier in the lecture series, Rafizi said Malaysia faces three main economic challenges in the form of fiscal consolidation, broadening the tax base, and restructuring the economy.

The minister also said key decisions on subsidy, broadening the tax base, and pivoting to a value-added economy might happen in the next nine months. 

Rafizi said the current administration is “the most stable government since 2004” and believes that the strong mandate in Parliament would help with the economic reform plans. 

To this, Musa said: “Rafizi, the public at most will give you three to six months. After that, they are not going to be polite with you.” 

Musa, a former prime minister in the 1980s during Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s first stint as prime minister, also responded to Rafizi’s assurance of a stable government with, “No, not quite.” 

“In the history of Malaysian politics, I can tell you, they never could be sure what is around the corner,” Musa warned. 

Also present at the talk was Dewan Negara president Tan Sri Dr Rais Yatim.

Edited ByTan Choe Choe
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