MoHA tables BND131,240,030 budget proposal

|     Hakim Hayat     |

THE Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) yesterday tabled a budget proposal of BND131,240,030 for the financial year 2019/2020, underscoring its strategic objectives of maintaining the security and welfare of the public, socio-economic development and strengthening community cohesion as its priorities.

At the fourth day of the 15th Legislative Council (LegCo) session, Minister of Home Affairs Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Kerna Dato Seri Setia (Dr) Haji Awang Abu Bakar bin Haji Apong in the budget read-out highlighted a number of initiatives that are already in place and in progress to achieve its objectives.

These include enhancing the effectiveness of revenue collection; construction of infrastructures to enhance convenience and welfare of the people; enhance service quality particularly in simplifying business processes and contributing to the business and investment ecosystem; generating a disciplined community that would support the effectiveness of the government’s initiatives such as preserving the environment as well as in strengthening and empowering leadership in the grassroots level.

He added that the MoHA will continuously strive to offer services that would support the enhancement of quality of life and generate a developed and resilient economy that can be reaped by today and tomorrow’s generation, in line with the theme of the 2019/2020 government budget ‘Investing in Our Future’.

Several key highlights in MoHA’s budget read-out include the identifying of a number of potential Public-Private Partnership (PPP) projects within the capital.

Without going into specifics on the projects, the minister said these joint public-private sector projects are hoped to ease the government’s burden, apart from saving costs.

“This will also open opportunities for local entrepreneurs and foreign investors,” he added.

The minister also shared a Kampong Ayer revitalisation project to beautify the area and improve river and land connectivity where 153 houses are planned to be built in Mukim Saba.

As part of a Central Business District (CBD) revitalisation project, he said the Taman Mahkota Jubli Emas in the capital has become an added value and attracting factor for the public and tourists.

The minister said, “It can support economic diversification efforts and in the long-term, this park will increase real-estate value, pull in more investment and encourage more cultural and heritage based activities and make the capital more vibrant.”

To ensure a well-balanced ecosystem for the welfare of the people through regulations, the minister also announced the MoHA’s planned implementation of a Hawkers by Law Act by the middle of this year that would control hawking activities by introducing fines under the Minor Offences Act Chapter 20, that would help maintain cleanliness and ensure the welfare, health and safety of the public.

The minister said, “A survey was recently conducted to obtain feedback from the public and generally, this has garnered a positive response.”

In efforts to develop the economies of village communities, the minister also shared that they are continuously working together with relevant agencies in driving forward the ‘One Village, One Product’ (1K1P) initiative.

He shared that an estimated BND692,196 of sales were generated for 1K1P products in all four districts in 2018.

To continue this momentum, the minister said that this year will see the signing of a Memorandum of

Understanding (MoU) with the Community Development Department (CDD) of the Ministry of Interior, Thailand, to bring in experts of Thailand’s ‘One Tambon, One Product’ (OTOP) to share experience and support management for 1K1P products so they can compete at a greater level.

“At the same time, the ministry is amplifying community participation through the village entrepreneur registration to identify potential entrepreneurs and businesses that can be further developed and channelled into the 1K1P project,” the minister added.