Mustapa Urges Immediate Investigation Into GST Refund Theft Allegations

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KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 9 (Bernama) -- Former International Trade and Industry Minister and Member of Parliament for Jeli, Mustapa Mohamad, urged the government to immediately investigate Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng’s allegations that the previous Barisan Nasional-led (BN) government had stolen RM19.4 billion of Goods and Services Tax refunds.

He said Lim’s claims were serious as it not only impugned the image of BN but also civil servants in the Finance Ministry and the Royal Malaysian Customs Department.

“These allegations are very serious as it meant the misuse of power and misappropriations were planned.

“The image of both the previous government and civil servants are tarnished. In my opinion, an in-depth investigation must be carried out immediately and completed within one week,” he said in a statement Thursday.

Mustapa said the results of the investigations should be made public as befits a responsible government.

“In the spirit of transparency and reformation promised by the government and in fairness to all parties, this issue should then be referred to the Public Accounts Committee,” he said.

Lim told the Dewan Rakyat on Aug 7 and 8, that RM19.4 billion in GST refunds were stolen by the previous BN-led government.

He said businesses were not paid the input tax credit due to them because the monies meant to be deposited into the government trust account were moved into a consolidated fund and spent.

-- BERNAMA