Lim: Cops took my statement on RM16 bil income tax refund ‘shortage’

PETALING JAYA: Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng today confirmed police are investigating the alleged RM16.046 billion “shortage” for income tax refunds.

He said the investigation into the alleged criminal breach of trust was launched after DAP’s Keranji assemblyman Chong Zhe Min lodged a police report last week.

Lim previously said the previous administration failed to refund RM16.046 billion in overpaid income tax and property gains tax in the last six years, which was due to 1,653,786 companies, individuals, associations and foundations up to May 31 this year.

The balance in the Tax Refunds Trust Fund (TBBC) has only RM1.486 billion, based on the records of the Accountant-General’s Department.

“The income tax (Inland Revenue Board) chief executive officer had written to Irwan Serigar in 2016, seeking money to be transferred to the trust fund but the request had fallen on deaf ears,” he said, referring to the former Treasury secretary-general.

Lim claimed what the previous government did was tantamount to forgery and abuse of funds in order to cover up the financial deficit.

“Who is the one responsible for this ‘shortage’? Was it Irwan or the former finance minister, Najib Razak?” he asked.

Irwan had said he welcomed a police investigation into the matter.

Lim previously claimed the former government “robbed” the money amounting to RM19.25 billion from the goods and services tax (GST) trust fund account.

Police had recorded his statement on this GST refunds matter last week.

The issue on the GST refund “robbery” was bought up by Lim in the Dewan Rakyat early this month.

He claimed some people had not received their refunds for the past two years.

Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin also lodged a police report on the missing money.