SEBERANG JAYA: Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said today that Datuk Seri Najib Razak was so good in accounting which resulted in Malaysia’s debt reaching one trillion ringgit.
Lim also congratulated the former prime minister and finance minister for hiding the fact from Malaysians until Pakatan Harapan assumed federal power after the 14th General Election.
“That is his capability, so much so none of us knew the country’s debt until the change in government.
“I want to congratulate him for brilliantly hiding the fact,” he said in response to Najib’s statement on his Facebook today.
Najib had chided Lim for making accusations without understanding that the government used a different accounting system from that of the private sector.
Lim had reportedly said that the previous Barisan Nasional administration had recorded nearly RM16 billion in unrefunded taxes as revenue, and that this could be deemed as “falsifying accounts.”
Stressing that he would issue a lenghty statement on the matter, Lim said whenever he raised an issue, Najib would divert attention to a different issue.
“I will also do that, like in the case of the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB).
“But I want to ask him why is it that until now, he is trying to blame us for failing to return the money, alleging we had spent it. But the RM16 billion is over six years. “Even the Inland Revenue Board (IRB) had written to former Treasury secretary-general Tan Sri Dr Mohd Irwan Serigar to transfer the sum but to no avail.
“Is what happened back in 2016 also our fault?” he asked.
Lim said Najib should know that he may not be correct all the time.
“Just look at the Equanimity...who is paying for that. Look at the large seizure of cash by the police in the numerous raids, look at the branded bags, jewelery and such. What is his explanation?
“This is what raised the people’ s anger because money has been misused and we are made to pay back the money which has not been paid for six years,” he added. In his latest expose, Lim had said that 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.
The RM16.046 billion of outstanding tax refunds not returned by the IRB involved 1,653,786 cases of companies, individuals, societies and foundations. The cases dated back to more than six years.
Lim had also said that the arrears in tax refunds was due to the Cash Management Committee in the Finance Ministry not allocating enough money to the Tax Refunds Trust Fund (TRTF) as requested by the IRB. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd