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RAISING FUEL PRICES BY PUTRAJAYA MAY SPARK 'ARAB SPRING' IN MALAYSIA?


KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia - Putrajaya must ensure that its policies do not beggar Malaysians, said a Muslim group when warning that rising costs could create conditions conducive to a public uprising similar to the 2011 “Arab Spring”.
Criticizing the up to 20 sen increase to petrol prices today, the Muslim Youth Movement of Malaysia (ABIM) said the hike as well as the Goods and Services Tax (GST) were piecemeal and disorganized attempts to address a systemic issue with the wastage of public funds.
“The economic independence of the public must be based on free incentives (free from political interference) and competitiveness based on efficient fiscal planning. 
This way, the public will not become ‘beggars’ and forced to tighten their belts on their own land,” the group said today.
“We don’t want the tragedy of Mohammad Boauzazi in Tunisia (which sparked the Arab Spring) to happen in our country! If it occurs, it will send the country into a political crisis that would only lead to further suffering among the public.”
  • Boauzazi was a Tunisian street vendor who reportedly immolated himself in 2011 to protest harassment by local authorities and was, according to popular accounts, the trigger of the public uprisings there and elsewhere in the Middle East that were dubbed the “Arab Spring”.
The increase prompted PKR MP Rafizi Ramli to press Putrajaya to reintroduce the fuel subsidies it eliminated last year, after he pointed out that pump prices were rising despite oil getting cheaper globally.
Yesterday, a survey by recruitment firm JobStreet found that nine in 10 Malaysians cited difficulty in coping with the higher costs  of  living following
the  introduction  of GST in April.
  • The prices of RON95 and RON97 petrol went up by 10 sen and 20 sen respectively yesterday.
Source:  Malay mail
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