PETALING JAYA: It was Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad who gave the instruction to reveal the financial scandals under the previous administration, said Lim Guan Eng.
The Finance Minister said he did not have the authority to order other ministries to expose the scandals.
Lim was responding to Pakatan Harapan de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s suggestion for him to ask others or the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to expose scandals as his position as the Finance Minister is “sensitive”.
“I’ve met Anwar several times to explain the country’s economic situation and the financial scandals. All these have been explained to Anwar. All the exposé of scandals related to 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) and other scandals in the media were done on the instruction of the Prime Minister. He understands this,” he said yesterday.
He said the rakyat had the right to know the financial position of the country and its economy.
“The people do not want the Government to hide. My ministry will continue to reveal all financial scandals in the 100 days, as instructed by the Prime Minister.
“I appreciate Anwar’s input and welcome all opinions or feedbacks for us to save the country’s economy. All of these views will be accepted openly,” he said.
In an interview with Malaysiakini, Anwar had suggested Lim to assign the task of explaining the scandals to “one or two other ministers, or even the MACC”.
Lim said the Finance Ministry had outlined an alternative plan to handle the country’s RM1 trillion debt through postponing projects and austerity measures.
“These prudent initiatives are taken to ensure the budget deficit remain at 2.8% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP),” he said, adding that he has met various investors, as well as local and foreign fund managers to explain the financial policies.
Meanwhile, Umno’s strategic communication unit has urged the Government to immediately ask the Finance Minister and Economic Affairs Ministry to stop discrediting the economy when they are overseas.
“What is the benefit to tell foreign investors that the country is going bankrupt? Foreign investors will be afraid to invest here and those who are investing here would want to leave Malaysia.
“This will have a negative impact on the economy and the rakyat. Please stop politicising the economy. The campaigning period for the general election has ended,” it said.
It added that the investment community on Bursa Malaysia, especially the foreign investors, have reacted negatively on several drastic moves taken by the Government.
A month after the general election, it said, the market value of EPF in 10 listed companies declined 12% or RM6.09bil, from RM51.21bil to RM45.12bil within a month.
It said Umno was worried and warned that if the local stock market continued to go south, it would affect the performance of EPF and its ability to pay dividends in future.
The same goes for other funds, such as Permodalan Nasional Bhd, Kumpulan Wang Persaraan and Tabung Haji, it added.