PETALING JAYA: Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong has taken a jab at PKR senator Dr Yaakob Sapari for not knowing about the RM1.4bil contract for padi subsidies and imports that were awarded to the National Farmers Organisation (Nafas).
The MCA president questioned how could Yaakob, who is also a Nafas board member, not be aware of the allocation by the Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Ministry that was announced during the tabling of Budget 2020.
“Did he not know that the ministry has approved RM1.55bil in allocation for the subsidy and incentive of rice and padi subsector for 2020?
“The details are all included in the Budget 2020, please read!” he said in his Facebook post on Wednesday (Dec 11).
Dr Wee, who was following the debate of Budget 2020 in the Dewan Negara, said the issue of the RM1.4bil direct contract award for padi subsidies and imports to Nafas was raised by senator Datuk Seri Ti Lian Ker on Tuesday (Dec 10).
“Yaakob had, during questioning, claimed that a RM900mil deal was signed instead of RM1.4bil.
“What deal was that? Did he indirectly acknowledge that the direct award took place, while the minister said otherwise, that the process was still underway?” he said.
Out of the RM1.55bil, Dr Wee said that RM395mil was allocated for the Skim Baja Padi Kerajaan Persekutuan (SBPKP), followed by RM460mil for Skim Insentif Pengeluaran Padi (SIPP), RM75mil for Insentif Benih Padi Sah (IBPS) and RM620mil for Skim Subsidi Harga Padi (SSHP).
“Has he forgotten that minister Datuk Seri Salahuddin Ayub has also admitted that he wrote a letter to the Prime Minister on November 7, requesting a direct negotiation for this RM1.4bil to Nafas?
“Be careful when you open your mouth, Yaakob. Don’t be like the secretary-general who got transferred, ” said Dr Wee, referring to ministry secretary-general Datuk Mohd Sallehhuddin Hassan, who was allegedly transferred to the Public Services Department following the controversial contract.
On Nov 22, Dr Wee questioned the procedure in which the contract was awarded to Nafas, claiming it was done via direct negotiation instead of through an open tender.
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