BY EILEEN NG (TMI)
November 28, 2013
Latest Update: November 28, 2013 03:24 pm
Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim has again earned the wrath of de facto PKR leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, this time over the huge increase of salaries to state leaders and assemblymen.
“The Menteri Besar has to review the quantum and he has to give a reasonable justification for the hikes,” Anwar (pic) told reporters at the Parliament lobby today.
His remarks come two weeks after his criticism of Khalid for his frugal style of government spending.
Yesterday, the Selangor State Legislative Assembly approved a salary hike for all 56 state assemblymen effective next year, with its Deputy Speaker getting the highest percentage of 373.3%.
The menteri besar’s salary would be increased from RM14,175.15 to RM29,250; state executive committee, from RM6,109.29 to RM20,250; speaker, from RM6,109.29 to RM22,500; deputy speaker, from RM3,327.50 to RM15,750; and state assemblymen from RM6,000 to RM11,250.
Anwar said the increase in the salaries of assemblymen was too much and too sudden.
He said although he agreed with raising the salaries, the quantum is “totally inappropriate”.
Anwar disagreed with Khalid’s reasoning that the increase was 75% of the allowance and salary for administrative members and state assemblymen in Sarawak.
“I don’t think we should use it as a basis. Nevertheless, Khalid has to explain to Pakatan as well as the media the reasons for the hike,” he said.
Selangor’s last salary adjustment was made in 2011.
Khalid, in his second term as Selangor MB, has been criticised in the past for being too prudent with the state’s spending and for holding back state reserves accumulated during his first term. The policy drew criticism from PKR deputy president Azmin Ali.
Last month, Anwar said Khalid should ease up on the purse strings and use the money to help the needy in the state.
“It is good to have excess funds and to spend within our means, but there are still poor people in the state, there are still youths who cannot afford to get into university, and there are people who need housing aid,” he said, adding that the people wanted efficiency and transparency, and not just excess funds. – November 28, 2013.