|The industry's 6% press statement|
Just read Don't blame telcos for prepaid tax, PKR tells PM.
What else can you expect a political party like PKR to do but politicize a strictly business-industry decision?
We won't take PKR seriously on matters like this, of course, after all this is a party led by a man who would have sub-contracted the running of the Malaysian economy to the IMF if he had succeeded in becoming PM in 1998 which, incidentally, was the same year the Government introduced the so-called prepaid tax.
Anwar Ibrahim might even have a hand in the prepaid tax for all we know! He was Finance Minister then, after all.
Anyway, back to the don't-blame-telcos piece in the Malaysian Insider. The PKR dude has a point, actually. Takkan Najib Razak tak tau, kot? The industry players have held several meetings to discuss passing of the prepaid tax to consumers. They met the relevant ministry's officials who surely would have advised the CEOs of the telcos on their proposed move and informed the relevant Minister. Everyone knows that the telcos have been absorbing the prepaid tax since 1998 and has been wanting to pass it to the consumers but were never able to agree on it until now. Everybody knows, too, that it was not Celcom's idea or Maxis' desire, that it was the guys from DiGi who were the ones pushing very hard ...
Rais Yatim, the "relevant" Minister here, is known as a hands-on, man.. He likes to put his fingers and hands in places he shouldn't. He is so hands-on that when Bernama hosted the media buka puasa with the PM during Ramadan, the chairman of the national news agency did not get to deliver his address because Rais Yatim felt he and not the chairman should be the one addressing the journalists in the presence of the PM and his wife.
So I don't believe Rais Yatim did not know about the telcos' decision to pass down the taxes to the people who should be paying them in the first place - the consumers. He said the government had no say in the telcos' decision. Yes, it is a collective decision by the industry but since when has the ministry not have a say? The telcos are regularly told to "donate" money for and send "participants" to Rais Yatim's events ... They are the ones who usually don't have a say.
Assuming Rais Yatim knew of the 6 per cent decision, why then didn't he brief the Cabinet and keep the PM in the loop?
He not on the same frequency with PM and his colleagues?
And if he did not know of what the telcos were plannng to do, well .... I've always said that the ministry is too big, too complicated for Rais Yatim.
Either way, Big Dog thinks Rais failed big time .... The PKR people may disagree.