Shahrir Samad Takes a Swipe at Shahidan Kassim over Budget Betrayal Remark

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Umno veteran Tan Sri Shahrir Samad today questioned fellow party member Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim for calling government backbenchers who did not support Perikatan Nasional’s (PN) Budget 2021, traitors.

Shahrir, a former Johor Baru MP, was commenting on Arau MP Shahidan’s strong reaction to those who questioned the proposed Budget to the extent of accusing the lawmakers — including from Barisan Nasional (BN) — of “betraying” Malaysians’ trust.

“The PNBBC chairman was really aggressive in defending Budget 2021.

“Never have those who disagree with the ruling coalition’s Budget been criticised this much. Datuk Shahidan Kassim must have been really desperate that those who don’t support Budget 2021 can become traitors,” the ex-chairman of the BN Backbenchers Club (BNBBC) said in his Facebook post.

He also wondered how Shahidan was appointed chairman of the PN Backbenchers Club, pointing out that the BN coalition — which is anchored by Umno — is not officially a component of the PN coalition though its members hold government positions.

“He is a BN MP. BN is not even in PN. How did he become the PN backbenchers’ chairman?” Shahrir asked.

Shahidan was reported by Free Malaysia Today and The Star to have remarked that those who reject Budget 2021 is “betraying the people’s trust” during the debate on the issue in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday while replying to BNBBC chairman Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Najib, a former prime minister had remarked on November 10 that BN’s support for the Budget was dependent on several conditions, including adding provisions that would allow cash-strapped Malaysians to withdraw up to RM10,000 from the Employees Provident Fund, and extending a loan moratorium for another six months. – MMO