THE Malaysian Embassy in Moscow uses an old jalopy of a car. In Poland, embassy staffers are using an old Volvo 240 and the fax machine needs repair.
These are examples of facilities that are not helping Malaysia’s image around the world, said Datuk Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar (BN - Santubong)
He criticised the Foreign Ministry for not giving enough allocation to finance the operational costs of overseas missions.
“I saw our embassy official in Moscow driving a dilapidated car that would be more suitable for use in a farm.
“An old Volvo 240 is used in our embassy in Poland, and the fax machine is broken.
“Clearly there are weaknesses (and) we must take care of the country’s image around the world,” he said.
Dr Junaidy Abd Wahab (BN - Batu Pahat) asked whether it was true that Thailand and Indonesia gave bigger operational allocations to their missions than Malaysia.
Foreign Ministry parliamentary secretary Datuk Ahmad Shabery Cheek replied that the Cabinet was aware of the shortcomings in Malaysia’s foreign missions and the need to improve the image and services there.
“The Treasury and the Public Services Department have been asked to review the allocations and improve the standards of all 104 Malaysian embassies, high commissions and consulates.
“A total of RM760mil has been set aside in the Ninth Malaysia Plan for this purpose,” he added.