Juffa describes 2017 Budget as ‘insult’ to people

Governor for Oro Garry Juffa has tagged the 2017 Budget as an assault on the ordinary people of Papua New Guinea.

Juffa queried the hike in income taxes and the reduction of funding for health and education which are the two vital services the ordinary Papua New Guineans deserved.

He said the Government was punishing legitimate tax payers and allowing tax evaders to get away scot free.

He further added that the promise for increase in funding to provinces is totally misleading as Provinces never got their functional grants on time and many public servants were paid but unable to deliver their services due to no funding.

Juffa said whilst the Government preached about increased funding, there was very little oversight and much of the development funds were usually used by MPs for campaigning for the 2017 elections.

“A Government that overtaxes its people instead of finding other means of raising revenue…really does not care for them.

“This is obvious in the 2017 Budget...why tax the little guy who is barely able to live day to day and has no savings?

“Why not tax the forestry and fisheries companies who have been evading taxes for so long?

“Why not audit the foreign real estate owners who live offshore and pay near nothing in taxes?

“How about the numerous wholesale and retail outlets that are submitting false tax and Customs invoices and use their own underground banking systems to transfer funds?

“Or the companies that do not pay income tax for their workers because they are on "business visas"?

“How about the companies that use our nation and resources but are paid overseas?

“Or how about a radical effort to review the CSTB and stop awarding inflated contracts! Well for all those who are adamant and loyal supporters of this Government, when you see your meagre savings shrink and your take home wage unable to afford your family's needs...you know who to praise...that's their version of development...your taxes are paying their luxuries.”

Freddy Mou