PUTRAJAYA: An audit to gauge the implementation of the cooking oil subsidy has found leakages in some areas, says Datuk Armizan Mohd Ali.
Without revealing specifics, the acting Domestic Trade and Cost of Living Minister said the leakages were detected in certain districts.
He said the ministry began the full audit last month to determine the effectiveness and weaknesses of the subsidy.
“With the audit, we will be able to list the actual need for the product, how to improve the implementation of the subsidy, and a mechanism to reduce leakages and misappropriation,” he told reporters after the launching of the Cost of Living Symposium on Tuesday (Nov 28).
Asked if the leakages were serious, he said the degree differed from locality to locality.
“We will be able to have a clearer scenario once the audit is completed in January.
“Perhaps by then, a new minister will reveal the findings and the cases which we can act on,” he added.
Armizan also said proposals would be made to prevent leakages.
He said RM500mil had been allocated for cooking oil subsidy this year but price increases could drive the amount up to RM1.9bil by year's end.
“This is why we need to look into this (the leakages). Several lawmakers, including Titiwangsa MP Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani, are among those who have been raising this issue.
“We must ensure that subsidies by the government are effective and that there are no leakages,” added Armizan, who is also Minister in the Prime Minister's Department (Sabah, Sarawak Affairs and Special Duties).