KUALA LUMPUR: It will cost more than RM300mil to hold local council elections nationwide, says Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin.
"With regards to the cost implications, it is estimated that it will cost about RM2mil to hold elections for a single local authority. It would cost about RM308mil to hold elections for all 154 local authorities in the country," she said in the Dewan Rakyat in reply to a question raised by Wong Hon Wai (PH-Bukit Bendera) Tuesday (July 14).
However, she said there are no plans to hold council elections at the moment as the matter is still under study by the Government.
"The study will cover a three-year period with the findings brought to the Cabinet and Parliament for approval by mid-2021," she added.
She said that two committees have been formed to gather feedback from stakeholders and to formulate a mechanism for the implementation of such elections.
She said the study will also include a pilot programme on local council elections in Penang and Selangor.
Besides the cost implications, Zuraida noted that several laws needed to be amended if local council elections are to be held.
Datuk Mahfuz Omar (PH-Pokok Sena) took a swipe at Zuraida, asking if she had the backing of the Cabinet under the Perikatan Nasional administration as it now includes PAS, which is against local council elections.
"When I brought this up during the previous administration, YB Langkawi (former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad) was against it, yet none of you from the other side dared support me although it was part of the Pakatan Harapan manifesto," she retorted.
Zuraida helmed the Housing and Local Government Ministry under Pakatan's administration before its collapse in late February this year.
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