".... one of 5,000 Kelabits in this whole wide world, made it to become a minister that help change Malaysia... "
hen Dato Seri Najib Razak (Najib) made Prime Minister, the first thing that came to my mind was, hmmm what 'Bapa' should we call him? Tunku had 'Bapa Kemerdekaan', Tun Razak 'Bapa Pembangunan', Tun Hussein 'Bapa Kemakmuran', Tun Mahathir 'Bapa Pemodenan' and Tun Abdullah 'Bapa ?' (Can't remember really). Najib introduced a lot of abbreviations to the extent the public lost track of what they mean. He started with 1Malaysia, NKRA and all sorts of names. I was inclined to call him 'Bapa Slogan' implying a 'talk no walk' scenario but to the contrary, recently, I learnt some facts for which he deserves some credit. He 'walked the talk' via Dato' Idris Jala (Idris).
Idris, one of 5,000 Kelabits in this whole wide world, made it to become a minister. But of course, he was already successful as the Head of Markets for Shell globally stationed in London. Recently, I had the priviledge of hearing his story first hand face to face, and I must say that I am impressed. To all Malaysians, Idris appears to be the one who shouted "Malaysia will go bankrupt" and scares the entire civil service of KPIs to be met. Behind those shouts, he is an achiever, even if it means progressive achievement. I was impressed with what he shared and it's only justice if I share with you here in my blog. So here goes:
Government Transformation Program (GTP) was one of the efforts driven by Najib via Idris and it involves effective methods that produce results as follows:
14,222 policemen were relocated to 50 hot spots where crime rates are high. 3,557 policemen who were doing deskjobs were redeployed to doing actual police work outside the office. He further ranked all the 753 police stations across the nation and of course, if the station is way at the bottom, they'll have to answer and face consequences of some sort. This created competition to perform and concentrates efforts and resources to areas requiring it the most. As a result, Crime rate has reduced by 14%.
There are many highways in the central business district of Petaling and Wilayah Persekutuan. Some are congested and some are underutilised. Many bus routes go through the congested highways. Ya, you have guessed it right,.. change those routes using the underutilised highways such as KESAS. This happened and bus ridership has risen by 38%.
Only 60% of Standard 1 Primary students have been to pre-school. Imagine that! 4 out of 10 7 year olds may not even know how to read A, B, C when they start school. Idris introduced 1,062 pre-schools that housed 13,000 kids. In addition, 7,616 primary schools were ranked based on 3-year composite score of academic and co-curriculum faculties. This created the same effect like what he did to the police stations. Competition improves quality. I really hope that 60% statistic can be increased close to 100%. We shall wait for the outcome. Dato' (Idris), if you are reading this, please respond.
Government spending was increased dramatically by mutiplefold for key development areas namely Roads (10x), Electricity (5x), Housing (2.5x) and Water (7x). (2006-2008 against 2010-2012)
What does hard core poverty means? Well, according to Idris, it means those who does not have enough to eat. Various efforts were put in place such as 1Azam which means 'Akhiri Zaman Miskin' (Ending the Poverty Era). 1Azam consist of many Azams such as Azam Tani for algriculture, Azam Kerja for employment, Azam Khidmat for services, etc. All these with a sole purpose of providing decent jobs to the poor. Every Tuesday at 8pm, Idris and his gang will be around Masjid India giving free food to the homeless and chat with them to understand why they are jobless and homeless. Some are free riders whereby they just couldn't be bothered to work and lives on free food given out by charity workers at churches, mosques, etc. A sad story but Idris did manage to give jobs to many and within 6 months, his team managed to reduce the count of those within the category "not enough food to eat" by 40%.
Asian countries are porpular in this arena and Malaysia is not excluded. Whistleblower Protection regulations were introduced. 3,680 government contracts were published for transparency. 23 politicians were arrested (12 UMNO, 1 DAP and 1 PKR) as proven guilty in various corruption whereby 169 offences have been published at the MACC web site. Ya, the MACC appearances everywhere, such as PKFZ, is a product of this effort.
"... if we don't do it, we only have ourselves to blame..."
Najib and his cabinets meet on monthly basis to discuss all these with the respective government departments, ministries and authorities. Make no mistakes, KPI are being monitored and they are expected to produce results. If they cannot, they are expected to ask for resources and whatever support required to achieve results. So it's a game of "Show result or else, tell me why you couldn't give results". Idris heads the government body PEMANDU as the CEO who facilitates this. PEMANDU meets on weekly basis with those ministries.
Whilst GTP aims to improve the civil service, Idris also embarked on Economic Transformation Policies (ETP). This is driven by 3 main objectives as follows:
1. High Income - USD15,000 to USD20,000 gross national income per capita by 2020.
2. Inclusiveness - All races are given equitable opportunities.
3. Sustainability - Wealth for a long time.
Key economic areas were identified for better focus:
2. Palm Oil
3. Business Services
7. Oil & Gas
12. Greater KL
By 2020, Malaysia is expected to reach 31.6 million population with gross national income per capita of USD16,800. With that kind of size, it will (is) important to have a central business district that is at a world class standard, hence No. 12 Greater KL. Planning is on-going to fit in underground train tube web beneath KL and surrounding urban. High speed rail from Thailand to Singapore via the peninsula will also be explored and River of Life programmme will help clean our rivers.
20% of the monetary requirement will require private investment and this has been committed by private sectors on various projects that will help create over 3.3 million jobs in view of achieving the intended income per capita level mentioned earlier. 87% funding from private sector worth USD237 billion has been planned for the next 10 years.
The private sector has the opportunity to contribute to the country in a more effective fashion unlike in the past where many hurdles discouraged such efforts. For example, strategy wise, it may be counter productive in the past as shown in the electronics industry. Malaysian companies were doing assembly lines where they could have added more value if they had done manufacturing of core products. Another example would be Oil Palm in the terrains where men were used as transporters instead of buffalos. Idris has embarked on raring buffalos to address this.
The government has also committed to procure products and services produced by the private sector such as health equipment rather than importing it. The government has also started on infrastructure projects. One big example is the High Speed Broad Band (HSBB) via grants given to Telekom Malaysia Berhad. Everyone has gone cyber,.. well guess what, talks have started with various parties to spread the use of e-payments, mobile-payments and the like instead of hard cash. With that, fibre optics have been given a 'must' status for all new real estate development enforceable by new By-Laws in place. Internet has reached schools to promote e-Knowledge and e-Learning and the Government themselves have embraced e-Government and e-Healthcare.
Of course these are all only a fraction of what Idris and his team was, is and continue to put efforts on. There are a lot more to be shared had he been given a whole day to talk but in my opinion, this should suffice. Najib has been in power for over a year and hopefully, he will be as good as his father.
Idris Jala ended his presentation quite elegantly by saying "... if we don't do it, we only have ourselves to blame..."
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