Wong Chen tells PPBM MP to retract remarks on GST refund

PKR’s Subang MP Wong Chen (left) wants an apology from PPBM MP Willie Mongin over his Facebook post.

PETALING JAYA: PKR’s Subang MP Wong Chen has demanded that PPBM MP Willie Mongin retract a claim he told Mongin “to toe the line” over the “missing” RM19 billion in goods and services tax (GST) refund.

Wong Chen also wants an apology from Mongin, who left PKR to join PPBM after the collapse of the Pakatan Harapan government.

Earlier, Mongin, who was a Public Accounts Committee (PAC) member for four months, said in a Facebook post he had told Wong Chen and his PAC colleagues to “tell the truth” about the funds.

The Puncak Borneo MP said he had asked the PAC members if the money was “really stolen” after former finance minister Lim Guan Eng claimed in 2018 the money had been “robbed” by the previous BN administration.

He said he told the PAC members to tell the truth about the GST refund. “But YB Wong Chen told me to toe the line and said to me, ‘let DAP handle it’.”

Mongin said the refund was not “robbed” by Umno or by former prime minister Najib Razak. “The money was used for government purposes with proper records,” he said.

In an immediate response, Wong Chen denied Mongin’s claim and demanded a retraction of the posting and an apology.

He said he was the most critical member of the PAC in hearings on the “missing” GST refund.

“He should read the PAC records to better understand my position,” he said.

However, Mongin said the hearings were recorded in the Hansard, and his insistence to “speak the truth” led to his removal as a PAC member.

He said he did not regret being removed from the committee “but what I regret the most is that we were from a reform party which advocated justice, and to fight against kleptocracy”.

Lim had claimed in May 2018 that the GST refund had “gone missing”.

Former finance ministry secretary-general Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah, however, insisted that the money was not missing and that it could be found in the federal government’s Consolidated Fund.

In July last year, PAC’s then chairman Noraini Ahmad said the money was not missing and that based on the committee’s findings, it was used to pay for the government’s management and development expenditure.

Noraini explained that the previous BN government had channelled the money collected from GST into a consolidated revenue account.

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