KUALA LUMPUR, Mar 27 – The Dewan Rakyat today approved the Supplementary Supply Bill (2017) 2018 seeking an additional RM7.123 billion by a majority vote, after it was debated at the policy stage. Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani said the additional allocation was necessary in view of several unavoidable and important matters.

“Government agencies have to adhere to the existing budget allocation. If they need an additional budget, they have to produce justification to enable them to continue with the programmes. They have to produce a detailed report. Unless, of course, there is a catastrophe which calls for an immediate allocation,” he said when winding up debate on the bill.

He also said that seeking a supplementary budget was an ordinary matter annually in Parliament. “We always seek supplementary budgets. In the period 1995-1997, supplementary budgets were sought four times; in 2001-2002, four times; in 2006-2007, twice; and in 2016-2017, once,” he said.

The additional expenditure would be allocated to, among others, the Education Ministry (RM891.1 million); Home Ministry (RM804.27 million); Agriculture and Agro-based Industry (RM685.49 million), Health Ministry (RM479.07 million). Communications and Multimedia Ministry (RM24.3 million); Election Commission (RM82.07 million) and Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (RM35 million). The bill will be debated at the committee stage tomorrow. — Bernama

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