Friday, September 9, 2011

PAS tells public to protest 6 percent 'tax rob' on prepaid

PAS tells public to protest 6 percent 'tax rob' on prepaid

Sep 9: Unable to find ways to generate income, the government now appears to resort to "robbing the poor" by imposing six percent tax on every prepaid reload and starter pack purchase, said PAS vice president Mahfuz Omar.

He was responding to the announcement yesterday that the public will have to pay six per cent more on all transactions for prepaid mobile reloads and prepaid starter/SIM packs due to a new service tax by the government.

Mahfuz urged the government to foot the bill for the six percent tax, because Telco companies were currently locked in a stiff battle and were offering customers with all sorts of deals in their favour.

He pointed out that prior to this, Telco companies were not required to pay the levy under the Service Tax Act 1975 for prepaid services as it was not imposed by the government.

The Service Tax Act 1975 however requires telecommunication companies to levy service tax at the prevailing rate on telecommunication services, including mobile prepaid services.

Facility used by students, poor

Urging people to protest the latest move, Mahfuz (left) questioned why such a tax is imposed on a facility used mostly by the lower income group, as well as students.

"The government’s decision to victimise them in order to increase its revenue is not at all acceptable,” said Mahfuz, who also heads PAS's Consumerism bureau.

Mahfuz warned that the levy would pave the way for the controversial GST (Goods and Services Tax) should Barisan Nasional win the next general election.

PAS's Kuala Selangor member of parliament Dzulkefly Ahmad described the latest move an attempt to shore up UMNO and Barisan Nasional’s war chest before the 13th general election.

“The move to impose the six percent tax not only burdens the people, it is also a clear effort by the government to source their funds ahead of the 13th general election.

"The government under Najib Razak has never understood the suffering of the people especially the economic woes. The people continue to be burdened each time with hikes in petrol price and basic items, and now this six percent charge,” he sniped.