KUCHING, Oct 1: Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) hit out at Sarawak Pakatan Harapan (PH) chief Chong Chieng Jen for citing fiscal responsibility to rationalise the PH government’s failures in carrying out its election promises to Sarawak.
“This sort of behaviour is an outright lie,” lamented PDP president Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing in a statement.
He noted that during PH’s election campaign last year, Chong made a promise to return the 20 per cent oil and gas royalty and 50 per cent of all tax revenues to Sarawak as a way to get voters’ support but did not disclose the conditions of returning the tax collections.
“They (PH government) have clearly and deliberately failed to disclose the conditions of returning the tax collections in their 2018 election promises. As a result, it is unethical to make these kinds of promises that they could not fulfil.
“PH’s refusal to honour their election promises to Sarawak is clear evidence that they have promised too much and bitten off more than they can chew.
“Not only are their exaggerations impossible to be honoured, but they also have dastardly shifted the blame to the Sarawak government,” he opined
“I am sure Chong who is the MP for Stampin remembers his publicity drives for their 7 major points in the Sarawak PH election manifesto to voters with the message of “New Deal, New Hope”. The third point in those 7 points was clearly to return 20 per cent oil and gas royalty and 50 per cent of all tax revenues to Sarawak.”
Tiong stated that Chong must clarify to the voters what has happened to this manifesto.
“It does not matter to PH that it is completely reasonable for a state government to refuse any offer to give up the health and education allocation for 50 per cent of the state’s tax revenues. The Sarawak government is simply protecting the interests of all Sarawakians,” he added.
Tiong also did not rule out PH abandoning other promises made to Sarawakians.
“Using the fancy terms of fiscal responsibility and autonomy, they abandon any of their responsibility to make life better for East Malaysians.
“Make no mistake, this is exactly what abandoning responsibility is: dangling the 50 per cent tax revenue in front of voters, only if they bear the high cost of education and healthcare, which are the core responsibilities of the federal government.”
Tiong opined Chong had not only abandoned the people who voted for him and Sarawak but had colluded with outsiders to exploit the interests of Sarawakians.
He urged Chong as a Sarawakian to return to defending the rights and interests of Sarawakians instead of continuing to pander to the federal government. — DayakDaily