Former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak today called for even more Royal Commissions of Inquiry (RCI) - this time on refunds from the goods and services tax, and the Inland Revenue Board.
"The Harapan government should set up the RCI on these two issues immediately as it involves RM35 billion in government funds.
"(This is) to determine the truth and finding out if the BN government, Customs Department, and IRB had breached trust, or if the Harapan government is only continuing their political games," he said in a Facebook statement today.
Najib was commenting on allegations by Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng that there was a shortfall of RM19.248 in GST refunds, which he claimed was plundered by BN.
Lim also claimed BN had misappropriated RM16 billion in income tax and real property gains tax refunds.
Najib said if Lim's allegations were true, then the RM16 billion would only be one percent of the estimated RM130 billion in income tax collected by the IRB over the past 10 years.
He also said there were multiple reasons why IRB may not have paid the refunds.
This includes foreign workers or companies which are no longer in the country, companies that have shut down, or persons who can't be traced.
Lim had said the arrears are because the Finance Ministry's Cash Management Committee – which met monthly and was previously chaired by former Treasury secretary-general Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah – did not allocate enough money to the Tax Refunds Trust Fund despite the IRB’s request for funds.
Yesterday Najib had also called for RCIs on China-backed projects, namely the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) and the two Strategic Energy Resources (SSER) pipeline projects.