The Mahathir administration's move to abolish the Goods and Services Tax (GST) has taken funds away that could be used to help the public, says former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak.
"Now that the GST is gone, the rich and business people can evade taxes again, and they will benefit the most.
"The money lost to the rich can no longer be used to raise the salaries of civil servants and help the B40 group," Najib said in a Facebook post this evening.
He was commenting on Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad's announcement last night that his government would not be raising the salaries of civil servants, and that the minimum wage would be increased in stages.
Najib said Mahathir's remarks "saddened" him, and that raising wages was part of the reason why GST was implemented.
He also claimed that Mahathir was opposed to minimum wages, and cited a 2012 entry from Mahathir’s blog, in which the prime minister said minimum wages could scare off foreign investors.
Najib, however, said that the wage gap in Malaysia is still wide and that there was no need for foreign factories to come to Malaysia to exploit local workers for low wages.
The former prime minister, in his parting shot, said: "I hope the 'new Malaysia' isn't just for the rich and business people."