Frankly, I was unhappy about having to pay GST or Goods & Service Tax in addition to all the other taxes we already have.
"GST is a good way of taxing the rich and relieving the poor," he told me.
I don't doubt that at all. In fact, I don't even have a problem with that system. Many developed countries that I've visited have implemented the GST and it works just fine.
What I have a problem with, is the government propensity to collect so much tax from the citizens.
We are a nation blessed with one of the most sought-after natural resources - oil, also known as Black Gold.
Most people don't know this, but it is estimated that Malaysia has a revenue of between RM2-3 trillion per year from the Oil & Gas industry.
Not millions, not billions, but TRILLIONS.
Folks, that is a lot of money. A lot of good can be done with it to improve the lives of the citizens.
But instead, the money is grossly squandered and sometimes unaccounted for.
Take the expenses of the Prime Minister's wife, for example.
There is no way in heaven or hell that we can justify such ludicrous spending. Let me highlight a few points:
- Rosmah’s official residence, Seri Perdana is undergoing a RM65 million facelift.
- Her visit to the USA was heralded by a centre-fold spread in the New York Times, which was estimated to cost about USD 5 million.
The author of the article above even has her own set of rather pertinent questions:
How many people were in her delegation? What were their official capacities? Who decided who should accompany her? Who picked up the tab? Did anyone accompanying her pay their own way? What gifts did she give the respective heads of state? Have members of her delegation declared their gifts to the tax authorities? What was her itinerary?
Rosmah started her three-day visit to Saudi Arabia on Jan 8. Then she flew home to prepare herself for Taib Mahmud’s wedding reception. The day after, she resumed her mid-east trip and spent four-days in Oman. Lastly, on Jan 19, she flew to Bangladesh for three-days.
Was it necessary for her and her delegation to go back and forth and waste resources?
Rosmah Mansur thinks that the national coffers at her disposal simply because she is the Prime Minister's wife.
Meanwhile, the rakyat are still slogging everyday to make ends meet. To add salt to injury, they are required to pay taxes so that party-animal Rosmah can make paradise seem like the set of B-grade movie.
Isn't it time we do something about this sorry state of affairs?