By Adrian Lim
KUCHING, June 15: Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah questioned the integrity and the governance of the former Pakatan Harapan (PH) federal government.
He believed leaders of PH need to be accountable for the promises in their election manifesto before accusing the leaders of Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS), adding that the promises made by PH under their election manifesto for Sarawak were unfulfilled.
“When the PH leaders are talking about integrity and good governance, it is not only for those in GPS. It also applies to them (PH).
“When a political party comes up with an election manifesto, promise this and that such as 20 per cent oil royalty to Sarawak and 50 per cent of the taxes from Sarawak return to the state government.
“And election manifesto is the most important document in an election and after that what happened? (to PH election manifesto for Sarawak)
“That part (unfulfilled promises), I question the integrity (of PH),“ he said.
Abdul Karim was responding to a question about Democratic Action Party (DAP) Sarawak chairman Chong Chieng Jen who claimed GPS is like a woman who abandons her partner of more than 40 years of marriage in the sense of former Barisan Nasional (BN) government and recently became a partner to the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government.
Abdul Karim who is Youth and Sports Minister revealed that during a meeting with Chong, he was told that if the promises in the PH election manifesto for Sarawak were to be executed, Malaysia would be in financial trouble.
Nonetheless, he noted that at present, the GPS state government is able to get the State Sales Tax (SST) on petroleum from Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) as opposed to the statement made by former Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng in which he claimed that Sarawak will be bankrupt.
Abdul Karim who is Asajaya assemblyman noted the amount of SST to be derived from Petronas of more than RM2 billion was more than the amount of annual oil royalty of between RM600 million and RM700 million that was provided by the former federal government.
Besides, he observed that the PN federal government is able to come up with economic stimulus packages amounted to RM295 billion to reduce the financial burden due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Hence, he opined that if a country is in financial trouble, how would the country be able to come up with a large amount of funds for stimulus packages. —DayakDaily