Yesterday’s announcement by the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak that a 1Malaysia email account will be issued to every Malaysian above 18 years of age has spawned online protests by the public, claiming that the latest 1Malaysia exercise is an unnecessary wastage of taxpayer’s money and an attempt by “big brother” to keep citizens in check.
A check by GreyReview reveals that most Malaysians have gone on to popular social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter to vent their dissatisfaction, one example being the “1M Malaysians who don’t want Najib’s 1 Malaysia email” Facebook page, which is reminiscent of the online protest against Datuk Seri Najib’s announcement about the construction of the 100-storey mega tower project last year.
Many also question the reason why the RM50 million project was awarded to Tricubes Bhd, an ACE-listed company in danger of being delisted from Bursa Malaysia as early as October 29th 2011 due to financial irregularities.
These online protests prompted the Performance Management and Delivery Unit (Pemandu) to clarify that the 1 Malaysia email account will not be made compulsory and that the Government would not be footing the RM50 million bill for the project, but rather, it is a private sector-led initiative by Tricubes with investment from the company. This clarification was further emphasised on by the Prime Minister himself in a late night Tweet yesterday:
No explanation, however, was given as to how Tricubes will be funding the project considering its current financial woes.
UPDATE: Further clarifications by Dr. Fadhlullah Suhaimi Abdul Malek, Director of Communications Content and Infrastructure, Business Services NKEA, PEMANDU via @etp_roadmap on April 20 2011: