Two parliamentary members have dismissed the move by the Deputy Prime Minister Office to list seven security personnel on a visit purportedly for education development and trade to Dubai as "shocking".
Bukit Mertajam parliamentary member Steven Sim and Bukit Bendera Zairil Khir Johari said the Office also did not explain why it had to send a 17-man delegation to attend the five-day trip.
In a statement Apr 14, the parliamentary members noted that the Office had not refuted the list that they had leaked despite of coming out with a statement to decry the leaked documents as just a draft of the visit.
The parliamentarians also noted that the rest of the delegation was made up of personal aides such as four special officers, two political secretaries, a press secretary and a private secretary.
"If one of the main purposes of going to Dubai was to develop education ties and also attend an education exhibition, why are there no officials from the Ministry of Education?" they asked.
They also questioned the benefit on the part of the government from the trip.
In terms of education, they questioned the purpose of establishing bilateral relations when most gulf countries performed even worse than Malaysia in the recent Programme for International Students Assessments (PISA) 2013.
The parliamentarians also pointed out that the Office had yet to disclose the amount born by the government for the trip.
They also called for the Office to name other companies sponsoring the events apart from the two specifically mentioned Malaysians private companies.
"For the sake of accountability and transparency in the use of public funds as well as in the public interest, we hope these questions will be answered," they said.
The Office of the deputy Prime Minister had issued a statement Apr 10 dismissing the matter raised by the two parliamentarians as "not true" and "mala fide".
The Office said the documents revealed was just a draft of the visit and that there were changes made on the drafted version.
The Office said the schedule for the visit was packed and that the deputy premier was given a special treatment by being given the honour to deliver a keynote speech at an annual investment meeting.
The Office said the two Parliamentarians had made wild allegations and regretted the careless charges to cast aspersion that the deputy Premier was on a holiday and wasting public fund when he was actually working to strengthen bilateral ties and to draw foreign investment in.