There are some in Umno and many in the opposition who feel that the BR1M program is immoral and smacks of bribery and should be ended. If so then what good are election manifestos and election promises if we do not deliver on these promises?
I would like to remind these people that the BR1M program was stated in Barisan Nasional’s April 2013 election manifesto, which goes as follows:
For the entire populace, schooling aid of RM100 per child and the RM250 1Malaysia Book Voucher scheme help alleviate expenditure, while the BR1M assistance for households earning below RM3,000 and singles earning below RM2,000, has provided much welcome relief.
In the next FIVE years, we commit to:
- Gradually increasing BR1M up to RM1,200 for households and RM600 for singles while maintaining it on an annual basis;
- Increasing 1Malaysia Book Vouchers to RM300 & Schooling Aid to RM150;
So it was clearly stated that BR1M will not only be implemented but will be increased over five years from 2013 to 2018 when the next general election is expected.
This was what the Prime Minister promised the voters and since Barisan Nasional won the election and is still in power then it is the duty of the Prime Minster to make good this promise.
Are election manifestos and election promises merely a means to fool or trick the voters into voting for you and once you win the election you renege on these promises? Is this the mark of a responsible Prime Minister and government?
The voters voted for you because of what you promised to do if they voted for you. So we have to be very careful about breaking these promises. Promises have been made and promises must be delivered. And BR1M is one of the promises that were made.
And this is one very crucial issue that the Umno General Assembly must discuss next weekend. Do we want the Prime Minister to end BR1M? And if he does end it, is Umno prepared to face the risk of losing votes in the next general election?
We must seriously consider this point and not get emotional due to the call from the opposition, which is being echoed by some in Umno, that the BR1M program should be terminated. If we do terminate it after promising it in the April 2013 election manifesto Umno may suffer a backlash from the voters.