Feeling cheated after believing in an election promise made by Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam in 2015, some ruling party supporters are complaining about Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong going back on promise not to raise taxes.
During GE2015, DPM Tharman fancifully played with his words saying there will be no tax raises “until the end of the decade”. Naive ruling party supporters misunderstood his words and interpreted that there will no tax raises for the next decade, or until 2025. The PAP supporters received a shock earlier last week when their idol Prime Minister said taxes will be raised by as early as 2019, and many started accusing the dictator for cheating.
The Ministry of Finance today (Nov 22) issued a press statement defending the dictator PM saying that there has been “no contradiction” between the two ministers, and also confirmed that a tax hike is coming in 2019.
In the past week since the most expensive Prime Minister’s controversial call for more money, state media Straits Times and CNA have been gathering pro-establishment views to support a GST tax hike. PAP MP Tin Pei Ling proposed to increase the GST and “issue bursaries to help students and the hardest hit”.
The dictator PM did not make any justification to his proposed tax increase, or comment on the whereabouts of the billions of surplus recorded in each year’s Budget.