Now pay us, Anifah tells Putrajaya after record tax collection

Former foreign minister Anifah Aman has congratulated the federal government over its record tax collection for 2018 but says it is time to prove its goodwill towards the East Malaysian states. (Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: Former foreign minister Anifah Aman today told Putrajaya to pay what is due to Sabah and Sarawak after the federal government collected RM137 billion in direct taxes.

The Kimanis MP said the amount collected would be enough to pay what is owed to the two East Malaysian states in line with what is stipulated under the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).

“We in Sabah and Sarawak are still waiting for the revenue which had been decided on by the former Barisan Nasional administration,” he said in a statement in which he congratulated the Pakatan Harapan administration over its tax collection.

Last week, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng revealed that the government collected RM137.035 billion in direct tax collections in 2018, which he said was more than the previous government’s record of RM133.700 billion set in 2014.

Lim also said direct taxes collected in 2018 increased by 11.13% or RM13.723 billion compared with the amount collected in 2017.

Last month, Anifah had urged Putrajaya to prove its goodwill towards Sabah and Sarawak by making initial payments to the two states immediately.

Under the Federal Constitution, Sabah is entitled to receive 40% of the net revenue derived by the federal government in the state.

In November, Lim had said the federal government wanted to give Sabah its 40% revenue but did not have enough funds to do so.