GEORGE TOWN: Penangites have been misled into thinking that the state debt is at the lowest among all states due to DAP’s good governance in finance management of the state, Penang Gerakan claimed today.
Penang Gerakan treasurer Ng Fook On said Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng has been boasting that Penang’s debt had gone down by 90 per cent since DAP took over in 2008.
“Now, he claimed that the state’s debt is only RM64 million, which is the lowest among state governments due to its good governance and financial management.
“I want to remind our Chief Minister and at the same time let the people of Penang know the reason the state debt went down drastically is due to the takeover of RM655.24 million debts after a restructuring in 2011 by the Federal Government through the Water Services Industry Act 2006 and not because of good financial management,” Ng said in a press conference here today.
He pointed out that Penang would not have been doing as well as it claimed without the help from the Federal Government
The state debt, he said, would have increased to RM721.57 million at the end of 2016.
He cited a PBAPP presentation in 2012 which stated that Penang’s migration to National Water Services Restructuring Initiative (NWSRI) resulted in an immediate reduction of the state debts of RM655.24 million.
“This amount owing to the Federal Government will be repaid over 45 years without interest.
“There is still a long-term liability of RM655.24 million to be repaid over 45 years to the Federal Government,” he added.
Ng reminded the Penang state government and Guan Eng not to keep misleading Penangites that their financial management is excellent and that the outstanding loans has reduced drastically compared to when BN ruled Penang.