Najib gets a drubbing over ‘Community Chest’

By Tarani Palani, FMT

PETALING JAYA: Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak has received a drubbing for claiming credit for the private sector initiative to provide funds for vernacular and mission schools.

DAP leader and Seputeh MP Teresa Kok said: “He has no right to boast because the funds are from the private sector. He should not mislead the public into thinking that it was provided by the government or Barisan Nasional”.

On Monday, Najib announced that a minimum of RM100 million of gambling profits would be channelled to these schools annually through a fund called ‘Community Chest’.

It will be funded primarily by the profits of gaming company Pan Malaysian Pools Sdn Bhd, returns from its investments and public donations.

Kok also took Najib to task over his statement that NGOs and government linked parties will have a say in how the funds will be allocated.

“Najib said, ‘the funds will be distributed in close consultation with the government… parties like MCA, Gerakan and MIC as well as NGOs… to ensure that it will be distributed fairly’.

“The message he seems to be sending is, “if you support MCA, Gerakan, MIC and BN-affiliated NGOs, I will reward your school with education funds”

“It is much the same message as his infamous “You help me, I help you,” speech during the Sibu by-election,” said Kok in a statement.

Staying apolitical

Vernacular schools have complained about unequal treatment from the government and Kok said Najib’s attempts at associating himself with the funds will not deceive the public.