Speaker: PAC to scrutinise government spending after emergency

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The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) will be allowed to audit government spending made during the emergency once the order is lifted this coming August, said Dewan Rakyat speaker Azhar Azizan Harun.

Azhar told Utusan Malaysia that the government is still committed to transparency.

“The emergency ordinance states parliamentary meetings, including committees, cannot be held under the Emergency and I have referred this matter to the legal counsel of Parliament.

Bernama

“However, checks and balances will take place once Parliament is in session. All expenses will be audited at a later date, after the emergency has ended,” Azhar told the Malay-language daily.

PAC chairman Wong Kah Woh was quoted by Utusan Malaysia as saying that the oversight body was paralysed because it was not able to scrutinise government spending.

It was also reported that there are five ministry feedback reports that have not been tabled in parliament.

Wong had said two feedback reports must be tabled: the procurement and use of vaccines as well as the National Trust Fund (KWAN).

In April, the government said that it would withdraw RM5 billion from KWAN for vaccination expenses.

Finance Minister Tengku Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz the RM3 billion for procurement of vaccines as announced when tabling Budget 2021 was not part of the budget itself and was meant to be taken from the trust fund.

KWAN, which is governed by the National Trust Fund Act 1988, is managed by Bank Negara Malaysia.

It was established in 1988 to conserve the nation’s wealth, derived from petroleum and other natural resources, for future generations, which includes contributions from Petronas. – TMI