Jet-setting Najib’s trips cost nearly RM9m

By Patrick Lee, Free Malaysia Today

Since taking over the reins in April, 2009, Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak has spent nearly RM9 million on foreign trips.

PKR Senator Syed Husin Ali revealed a list containing details of the trips in the Parliament lobby this morning.

The list, provided by the Prime Minister’s Deparment, showed that Najib had gone on 42 official trips abroad which cost RM8,724,895.91.

The most expensive of these trips were visits to Japan, the United States and Vietnam. The trips cost RM2,094,635.39 and took place between April 5 and 22 this year.

Najib’s first outing overseas was to Thailand on April 10, 2009 – a mere week after he took over from former prime minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. It cost RM78,507.55.

Other notable trips included a nine-day trip to France from Oct 1 to 9 in 2009, where Najib spent a total of RM630,467.

The most expensive trip to a single country took place between Sept 20 and Oct 8 this year, when the premier spent RM1,043,923 in a visit to the US.

He also spent vastly different amounts in two separate trips to Thailand.

In his trip to Thailand from Nov 23 to 25, Najib spent a mere RM3,346.08.

Two weeks later, in his Dec 6 to 10 Thailand trip, he incurred a cost of RM84,572.04.

“I want to know what is the real profit from all these trips overseas, and what is the return from all this expenditure,” Syed Husin told the press.

First Lady

The senator also revealed that Najib had spent 274 days out of his 588 days in office (up to Nov 19, 2010) overseas.

This earned considerable ire from Syed Husin, who accused the prime minister of spending half his time overseas, when he should have been taking care of the country’s problems.

Asked if he knew the size of Najib’s entourage in his overseas trips, Syed Husin he said, “We don’t know his (exact) expenses, or the size of his (entourage).”

He also said that the premier brought his wife, Rosmah Mansor, on many of these trips.

However, he could not elaborate which trips were attended by Rosmah.

Meanwhile, the senator also revealed that the three-day First Ladies Summit from Oct 13 incurred expenses of up to RM4.498 million.