Our Malaysian news these past few days is exactly the Shania Twain song Ka-Ching!
Can you hear it ring
It makes you want to sing
It's such a beautiful thing, ka-ching!
Lots of diamond rings
The happiness it brings
You'll live like a king
With lots of money and things
And this is how some of our leaders seem to have lived by, judging from the trillion, billion and million figures we are hearing everyday.
The news reports are full of the word cash and money. We are all seeing dollar signs and many, many zeroes that our toes and fingers are not enough to count on. Suddenly mathematics has become interesting again.
The government's debt has been put at RM1,000,000,000,000 (1 trillion).
The 1Malaysia Development Berhad debt is about RM40,000,000,000 (40 billion).
Meanwhile, the cash taken away from the northern Kedah's Baling MP Datuk Seri Azeez Rahim's houses amounted to RM500,000 (500 thousand). Because he too were counting zeroes, he came out with a statement saying that it is 500 thousand only, not 500 million (as initially mentioned in a few media reports).
It is quite interesting to see that at a time when Malaysians are tightening their belts - and the ringgit gets lower in value - that so much money is being stashed up by politicians in their houses
Then, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission's newly appointed chief commissioner Datuk Seri Mohd Shukri Abdull revealed that there is a Cash King MP up in a northern state. He is known locally as "Pau Kau Tim" (guaranteed to settle). Apparently, he offered Shukri cash to settle the corruption cases against BN MPs.
Since then, the internet is abuzz with speculations on who this "Pau Kau Tim" is and how much would cash would take to "Kau Tim" with him.
Many of those in the BN circle knows who this "Pau Kau Tim" is but no one is daring to expose him, not just yet, for he is still an MP. For all we know, he may just "Kau Tim" so that he does not get exposed, although this time, the veil shrouding him is getting thinner by the day. Obviously no more sap sap sui (easy peasy).
It is quite interesting to see that at a time when Malaysians are tightening their belts - and the ringgit gets lower in value - that so much money is being stashed up by politicians in their houses. It is almost akin to the saying "water, water everywhere, but not a drop to drink".
The question foremost in the public's mind is why do these people hoard so much cash in their houses. Are they not afraid of being robbed? (Robbers must be kicking themselves for not smelling the easy loot.)
How many more of our politicians are still in the old kampung mindset of stashing cash in tins under the bed, inside pillowcases and under floorboards? How was all this cash transported to these places? This is scary knowing that we had trusted the past government to set up so many funds in our names and we as Malaysians put our hard-earned savings in them, convinced it was all safe under the hands of the leaders we picked.
The police said that the amount of cash taken away in luggage bags during the raid from a residential unit in Pavilion linked to former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has been counted to RM120,000,000 (120 million).
Also, how did local and international banks not track so much of cash being hoarded and not in circulation? If indeed this money came from the foreign sources, as Najib had claimed, did they go through the banking system or were they flown or shipped in as cold hard money notes? Did it get cleared by the customs if it were so? Then again, how much of it belonged to the funds meant for the very poor?
A recent report by Unicef stated that there were many hardcore poor Malaysians in the poverty housing scheme of PPRT eating non-nutritious food such as mere rice and salt, some even going hungry. This makes the amount of all these cash stashes hoarded by these politicians who were put up there by the poor people's votes not only disgusting but nauseating.
On another note, one might have thought that the police may have been used to dealing with so much loose cash, what with them having experience with bank robberies and all.
However, it seemed that all this cold hard cash has proven to be too much even for the police to handle by themselves that they have pulled in the central bank Bank Negara Malaysia to help in the counting and storing.
The money counting machines are now working full time and every serial number on each note has to be recorded. Those officials doing so must be so tired of numbers now.
The raids are not over as of yet. This is just the beginning. Meanwhile, Malaysians are brushing up on their mathematics.