Najib says welfare state leads to economic ruin

(The Malaysian Insider) – Datuk Seri Najib Razak today took aim at proponents of a welfare state, stating that all welfare states ended up facing “very serious economic problems”.

The prime minister told about 1,500 disabled and less fortunate people gathered at the Hokkien Association here that his administration strived towards providing a social safety net instead to ensure wealth is fairly distributed.

“We are not a welfare state. All countries that practise a welfare state end up facing very serious economic problems,” Najib said, in an apparent reference to PAS’s “Negara Berkebajikan” concept.

“But we practise a social safety net and give priority to welfare. Then we can create a fair and just society that is balanced in sharing wealth,” the Barisan Nasional (BN) chief added in his 15-minute speech.

PAS had championed a “Negara Berkebajikan” concept at its general assembly in June last year but BN leaders mocked the Islamist party for dropping its commitment to an Islamic state and also insisted the government had already introduced a welfare state.

“The government has always struggled towards achieving a welfare state. Therefore I find it strange and peculiar that they want to establish a welfare state.

“What they claim as new, we have had for a long time. There is no need for them to take the model of the current government,” Najib had said at a forum last June.