Guan Eng: Does PM need another special adviser for rising price of goods?

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Lim Guan Eng has asked Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob if he will move to appoint another “special adviser” for his administration in light of the worst food price escalation in the country’s history.

The DAP secretary-general asked this after it was revealed yesterday by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Special Functions) Abdul Latiff Ahmad that Ismail would be appointing another “special adviser” on health in addition to the other special advisers to the prime minister on law and human rights, and religious affairs.

“What do these special advisers do? Do they give papers or meet the prime minister weekly?


“The public is sceptical of the special creation of special advisers’ posts by Ismail as a political device to “buy” support,” he said in a statement today.

Lim said, with inflation at an all-time high for eggs, chicken, bread, vegetables, cooking oil and even ice cubes as well as imported fertilisers, insecticides and construction materials and labour, the ministers concerned have shown their ineptitude and ineffectiveness.

“Whilst the rakyat is suffering daily, there is no coherent plan nor concerted action to check the soaring prices other than trying to shift the blame on traders who are equally victims in this national crisis.

“Worse is when the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Alexander Nanta Linggi has flip-flopped on his own statement to reverse the soaring prices of basic necessities by December 9 by refusing to take responsibility if he fails to do so by then,” Lim said.

Lim added that no one could see the need for such special advisers unless it was because the current ministers (related to law and human rights, religious affairs and health) were not doing their jobs.

“In that case, the three ministers concerned should be relieved of their jobs immediately.”

The latest to be appointed is Kedah Umno chief Jamil Khir Baharom, who is now special adviser on religion to the prime minister.

Jamil previously held the post of religious affairs minister in the Barisan Nasional government from 2008 to 2018.

Prior to Jamil’s appointment last month, Ismail appointed former deputy Dewan Rakyat speaker Azalina Othman Said as special adviser for law and human rights.

Each of the prime minister’s advisers cost RM50,000 a month, according to a parliamentary written reply by Latiff to the Dewan Rakyat on November 10.

Latiff also announced that Ismail has special advisers on health, religion as well as law and human rights.

While the special advisers for law and human rights as well as religion have been made public, it is unclear who the prime minister’s special adviser on health is. – TMI