Users withholding data from Padu may hamper accurate targeting, says Kian Ming

PETALING JAYA: Some security flaws of the Central Database Hub (Padu) may have been fixed but the overall system design will not help with accurate targeting of subsidies, says Ong Kian Ming.

“For those who are receiving Rahmah Cash Aid (STR) but are (actually) not eligible because they have undeclared income streams, they are not going to (provide this) information to Padu.

ALSO READ: Padu must take M40 singles’ situation into account, experts say

“We are (also) not sure what other data Padu collects will be used to calculate new formulas for a new targeted subsidy programme,” the former deputy international trade and industry minister said in a Facebook post on Thursday (Jan 4).

Ong said if the formula is too complicated, the Cabinet may not be able to understand it and explain it to the public.

The former Bangi MP said a better alternative would be to use the STR database which is probably the most accurate in the country and has undergone many iterations and updates.

ALSO READ: Experts: Padu should have been thoroughly tested

The government should then decide on the most suitable channel to deliver targeted subsidies to the relevant groups.

“My fear is that the more time and energy we spend on Padu, the less time and resources we have to… (come up) with) a more practical targeted subsidy mechanism to replace the current untargeted petrol subsidy,” he wrote.