Health and Works ministries in need of bigger allocations

KUALA SELANGOR: Both the Health and the Works ministries are hoping for a bigger slice of the pie under Budget 2020, which will be tabled on Oct 11.

The Health Ministry said the bigger allocation was needed to address the shortage of staff, equipment and facilities that it had been facing for a long time.

Its minister Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad (pic) said it had submitted requests on the matter to the Finance Ministry for consideration during planning for next year’s budget.

Adding that there had been “positive” reaction to the requests, he said the ministry had not been getting enough allocation and was facing “understaffed” and “overworked” issues for a long time, which had also been acknowledged by the Auditor-General in his report.

“The ministry hopes that in next year’s budget, we will be given a bigger allocation to address issues related to facilities, equipment and staff so that we can better serve the people, ” he told reporters at the Kuala Selangor District Healthcare Award presentation ceremony here yesterday.

Dr Dzulkefly, who is also the Kuala Selangor MP, said he was currently in the process of working closely with the Finance Ministry to update the final list of requests.

“As I have previously said, the health sector besides the education sector, should be given priority. The allocation for the health sector should be in line with the country’s position as an upper-middle income economy, ” he pointed out.

In Alor Setar, deputy Works Minister Mohd Anuar Mohd Tahir said there had been many complaints about federal roads which were not addressed due to budget limitations.

“So, (hopefully, there will be) an increased budget – more than last year.

“(This is) because federal roads, highways, and bridges are used by the people every day, every hour, and they need to be upgraded, ” he told reporters after the Kedah State Legislative Assembly sitting here yesterday.

He said priority would be given to states with long federal roads, such as Pahang, Kedah and Perak.

On another matter, Mohd Anuar said there were 303 places in Kedah which had been identified as hotspots for floods due to drainage problems which must be given attention. — Bernama

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