Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has revealed that Malaysia does not have much money left after battling the war against the COVID-19 pandemic
He made the revelation while speaking to the Sikh community at a Vaisakhi celebration in Petaling Jaya yesterday, 12 April, reported Malaysiakini.
"So much money has been spent last year and this year. Why? It's all [for] COVID-19 and the economy," Muhyiddin said.
"This includes various stimulus packages totalling RM340 billion and RM322 billion allocation for the national budget."
"It's more than RM600 billion for this year alone. That's a big sum of money."
"What I am trying to say here is, we don't have much money left," lamented the premier
"We don't have as much (money) as before, because the most important thing for us is to make sure our lives and livelihoods [are] able to manage ourselves better [through] the amount of money that we have allocated (for) last year and this year."
He said the stimulus packages and financial aids introduced by his administration are provided to all communities in Malaysia, regardless if they are Malay, Chinese, Indian, Sikh, Sabahan, Khadazan, Dusun, or Iban, among others.
Muhyiddin said his government is forced to spend the colossal sum to support the country.
With that said, Muhyiddin said he pledged to increase the allocation for the Sikh community from RM2.18 million in 2020 to RM3 million in 2021
Based on the news portal's online broadcast channel, KiniTV, he also said that Putrajaya will allocate RM1 million to build a Sikh centre as proposed by the Malaysian Gurdwaras Council.
The premier expressed his desire to visit the Sikh centre once it has completed its construction a few years down the road.
Last month, Muhyiddin announced another round of economic stimulus packages — dubbed the Strategic Programme to Empower the People and Economy (Pemerkasa) — worth RM20 billion.
Out of the amount, RM11 billion comes from direct fiscal injection.
Throughout the pandemic, the government introduced several economic stimulus packages, such as Prihatin (RM250 billion), Prihatin SMEs (RM10 billion), Penjana (RM35 billion), Kita Prihatin (RM10 billion), and Permai (RM15 billion).
It all adds up to RM340 billion.