Uproar over RM700mil for polls expenses

Pakatan Rakyat demands to know why it takes that much to run the 13th national elections.

(FMT) – Pakatan Rakyat leaders today raised alarms over the Election Commission’s RM700 million budget to run the looming 13th general polls which is a drastic increase from its initial RM40 million allocation.

PKR senator Syed Husin Ali, speaking to reporters here, revealed Putrajaya’s request for an additional RM360 million for the EC’s operational expenses, and RM300 million for “security expenses” amid an ongoing national dispute over the credibility of the country’s elections system.

According to the former PKR deputy president, the amount was easily the biggest budget so far for an election.

“The government must explain why is there a drastic increase from RM40 million to RM360 million in allocation for the EC’s operational expenses.

“And this much money will be spent when there isn’t even any assurance that polls reform would be implemented,” Syed Husin said.

The senator pointed that the request for RM300 million for security expenses was also questionable citing past incidents where opposition ceramah events were attacked by alleged supporters of the ruling coalition.

“So what guarantees are there that taxpayers money would be spent accordingly?” asked the PKR senator.