KUALA LUMPUR: Another lawmaker has expressed his intention to quit the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) if Datuk Seri Ronald Kiandee stays on as its chairman.
Subang MP Wong Chen (pix), from Pakatan Harapan (PH), said it was wrong to have the ruling coalition occupy both the chairman and deputy chairman’s posts in the PAC.
He disagreed with Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s decision to keep Kiandee as chairman, given that the Belarun MP had defected from Umno to Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia on March 14.
However, Wong said he would stay on and discharge his duties until the PAC’s probe into the “missing” RM19.4 billion Goods and Services Tax (GST) credit refunds was completed, which is expected to be in mid-April.
He said if the top two positions were still in PH hands by then, he would follow in the footsteps of his party colleague Nurul Izzah Anwar and the three opposition MPs and resign from the panel.
“I have a duty to finish what I’ve started. It’s not right to quit in the middle of the GST refund probe, so I want to see to the completion of that particular investigation,“ Wong told theSun.
“I have already invested seven months hearing the GST issue. If there is no new PAC chairman from the Opposition once the probe is completed, I would resign.
“If the prime minister says the Opposition will be given the chairman’s position, I will remain (in the PAC).”
Nurul announced her resignation last Friday for the same reason. Earlier this week, Umno’s Datuk Dr Noraini Ahmad (Parit Sulong MP) and Datuk Seri Ahmad Hamzah (Jasin MP), and PAS’s Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan (Kota Baru MP) also quit in protest.
However, Takiyuddin said today he would remain in the PAC.
The premier later said Kiandee, the Beluran MP, would be replaced once a suitable candidate was found.
On Monday, deputy speaker Nga Kor Ming said a new chairman would only be appointed once all pending PAC cases were completed.
Aside from the GST refund issue, another ongoing case is the Vehicle Entry Permit system between Johor and Singapore.
Wong said he has shared his intention to leave the PAC with other committee members so that they could find a suitable replacement.
He also expressed hope that Mahathir would stand by the PH pledge to name an opposition MP as PAC chairman.