IRB assures full cooperation with taskforce investigating alleged misappropriation of taxpayers' money

Hashini Kavishtri Kannan

PUTRAJAYA:The Inland Revenue Board (IRB) will fully cooperate with the special police taskforce established to investigate the report of alleged misappropriation of taxpayers’ money.

Chief executive officer Sabin Samitah also confirmed Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng’s statement that there has been a shortage in channelling tax returns collected toTax Refunds Trust Fund (TRTF).

Lim in his latest expose said the previous government had failed to refund the excess income tax and real property gains tax paid by taxpayers totalling RM16.046 billion as of May 31, 2018.

The RM16.046 billion outstanding tax refunds not returned by IRB involves 1,653,786 companies, individuals, societies and foundations.

Lim had also said it was clear that RM14.56 billion not transferred from the Consolidated Fund to TRTF had been recognised as government revenue by the previous government.

Sabin said TRTF’s position was limited whereby importance was given to paying back the excess tax paid by individual tax payers.

“As of July 31, IRB has processed more than 90 per cent applications for current tax returns for individual tax payers.

“While for other tax payers’ category, refunds could not be made because there is no additional allocation,” he said, adding that the delay in paying back the excess tax was due to lack of fund in the TRTF.

He said in the Cash Management Committee monthly meeting chaired by former Treasury secretary-general Tan Sri Dr Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah, IRB had informed about the current credit balance position to be paid to taxpayers.

“IRB had also applied for additional allocation funding to the TRTF so that payments could be made. An official written application was sent to the Finace Ministry,” he said.

Sabin said in line with the government’s commitment and Lim’s advice, the IRB will consider allowing taxpayers who have outstanding tax refunds from IRB to make an application to set-off the amount against tax payable for the current year.

“For those who do not apply for the set-off, pay back will be processed based on the allocation TRTF.

“Taking into consideration the financial state of the government due to national debt over RM1 trillion, Lim is trying to find financial sources to pay back the excess money this year or in the following years.” © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd