KUALA LUMPUR, June 20 – Second Finance Minister Datuk Johari Ghani should apologise to every staff in the Royal Malaysian Customs for solely blaming the department over the recent Goods and Sales Tax (GST) announcement, PKR vice-president Rafizi Ramli said today.
Rafizi said the proposal had come from Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Seri Othman Aziz in the previous parliamentary session and was originally from Finance and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, citing Parliamentary records.
“It is very irresponsible to blame the Customs whenever a government’s decision to collect GST was objected by the people,” the Pandan MP said.
“This is because, the decision to collect GST comes from the Finance Ministry and could only be implemented by the Customs Department.”
Meanwhile, DAP Perak Economic Development bureau chief Chong Zhemin questioned Johari’s motive in blaming the Customs, pointing out that the proposal was signed off by Johari himself.
“Did Johari signed the GST zero-rate supply amendment order without understanding what he is signing? If so, do we have a puppet finance minister who will sign whatever order that is being put on his able?
“Or, is Johari trying to put the blame on the customs department after the decision to collect GST on necessity items such as vegetables, fruits and noodles earned the wrath of netizens?” he asked.
Earlier today, Johari said that any imposition of the GST on any new items must be approved by the Cabinet for it to go into effect immediately.
Johari was referring to the announcement made by the Customs yesterday on the cancellation of the GST on additional 60 food items which were supposed to go into July 1.
He said that the proposed imposition of the GST on 60 food items was made at the level of the department without referring to the ministry to be finalised.