Economic affairs minister Rafizi Ramli has said a committee led by chief secretary Zuki Ali will be tasked to select and combine some of the pledges made in manifestos presented by Barisan Nasional, Pakatan Harapan as well as other coalitions (Gabungan Parti Sarawak and Gabungan Rakyat Sabah) and parties that form the unity government, report FMT and The Star.
“At cabinet level, there is already a committee working to choose and combine specific programmes from each coalition’s manifesto. For now, it is not a committee of political parties. It is a government committee,” Rafizi said.
“We are a coalition of parties with different backgrounds and different policies, each with our own manifesto going into GE15. Now that we are in government, [we have] to quickly combine the manifestos… there are time constraints,” he added.
The negotiations on implementing the pledges will be guided by the 18 commitments under Clause 2 of the agreement signed by party leaders of the unity government last Friday (December 16, 2022). “I think the [vetting] process is ongoing. It’s only the second cabinet meeting. So far, the decision to streamline [manifestos] is ongoing,” explained Rafizi.
He also replied that it was the finance minister’s responsibility to distribute funding when asked if the new government would give equal funding to all MPs. “Ministers only answer what has been discussed collectively or what is under their purview. We have not crossed that bridge of discussion,” he said.
As it stands, PH leads the unity government with 81 parliamentary seats, followed by BN with 30 seats, GPS with 23 seats, GRS with six seats and Parti Warisan with three seats. Parti Bangsa Malaysia, Parti Kesejahteraan Demokratik Malaysia and Muda have one representative each, while two independents are also part of the unity government.
From an automotive/transport viewpoint, here is a simplified breakdown of the pledges made by the two largest coalitions in the unity government:
- Continue to reduce PLUS tolls gradually with the ultimate goal of eliminating tolls and returning PLUS highway to public ownership.
- Free public transportation rides for senior citizens, improving on the current policy of offering a 50% discount.
- Increasing the number of facilities and public transportation that are OKU-friendly.
- Expand the coverage and efficiency of public transportation, including ensuring 80% of urban areas will have bus stops and train stations within 10 minutes of walking; reducing the waiting period for any public transportation service, especially buses, to be no more than 10 minutes (this will require 10,000 buses for cities throughout Malaysia).
- Push forward the regulation and legalisation of “micro mobility” devices such as e-scooters and e-bikes for first and last mile connections, which can also see the government partner with ride-hailing services to offer transportation vouchers for those going to transit stations.
- Expand public transport payment methods to include debit cards and e-wallets.
- Abolish the approved permit (AP) requirement for all imported electric vehicles (EVs).
- Boost the motorsports industry among youths by building more drag racing circuits.
- Assist OKUs utilising ride-hailing services for their travel by providing them with financial aid through ride-hailing vouchers, which requires an allocation of RM10 million yearly.
- Have all public transport vehicles and official government cars to be environmentally-friendly by 2030.
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