Quit Cabinet on critical allowance stand, Wee tells Syed Saddiq

PETALING JAYA: MCA president Wee Ka Siong today told Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman to resign if his stand on the abolishment of the critical service allowance, seen as going against the Cabinet, is sincere.
Wee, however, believed Syed Saddiq’s criticism of the announcement by the Public Service Department (JPA) on the decision to do away with the critical service allowance for 33 sectors in the civil service is simply a drama.

“Syed Saddiq is good at acting. He acted in a populist way, criticising the JPA.
“Does Syed Saddiq not understand the principle of ‘collective responsibility’ practised by Cabinet members?
“If any minister is not aligned with the prime minister, there is only one way out — which is to resign.
“That is what is called the ‘Westminster’ system being practised in Malaysia,” he said in a Facebook post today.
Last night, Syed Saddiq expressed disagreement with the abolition of the allowance through a video on his Twitter account, arguing that the move would impact the younger generation entering the public service next year.
The PPBM Youth chief also called for ministers’ salaries to be reduced by another 10% until the issue surrounding the critical service allowance was resolved.
Last year, the government cut ministers’ salaries by 10%.
The JPA had announced that the critical service allowance abolishment would not affect existing civil servants enjoying it. It only affects new civil service appointees from Jan 1 next year.
Wee said: “Does Syed Saddiq realise that JPA is an agency under the Prime Minister’s Department, whose bosses are Dr Mahathir and Deputy Prime Minister Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail?”
He said as a minister, Syed Saddiq should be voicing his concerns at Cabinet meetings. He asked how it could become policy if it had not been discussed by the Cabinet and approved by the prime minister.
He said if Syed Saddiq was unhappy, he should voice it at a Cabinet meeting as such issues were decided collectively.
Having said that, Wee added that it was unfair to abolish the allowance.
“Instead of PH abolishing the allowance, why not stop projects like the third national car or the ‘flying car’?” he asked, saying this was not seen as a necessity when people were struggling with the rising cost of living.
It was reported that the decision would affect government doctors, nurses, engineers and other professionals joining the civil service next year.
Under the current scheme, government doctors receive a monthly critical allowance of RM750.

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