: Five traders would be charged in court next week for allegedly using the goods and services tax (GST) as a pretext to increase their prices.
Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Ministry (KPDNKK) secretary general Datuk Seri Alias Ahmad said the five cases were in Melaka, Penang and Federal Territory.
"They were among seven completed investigation papers (IP) referred to the Attorney General's Chambers. The traders would be charged under Section 21 of the price Control and Anti-Profiteering Act 2011.
"Another 34 IPs are almost completed for the A-G's Chambers to decide whether the traders should be prosecuted or not," he told reporters here Saturday.
He had earlier observed the implementation of the GST at Pasar Stutong, with KPDNKK Sarawak director Datuk Stanley Tan and deputy director Abd Hafidz A Rahim.
Alias said since the implementation of the GST on April 1, until April 30, the ministry had inspected 188,410 premises nationwide and issued 735 notices, of which 540 IPs had been opened.
Meanwhile, the office of the 'penghulu' would serve as a centre for the public to air their grouses over the GST.
"We have discussed the arrangement with the penghulu," he said, citing cases in Serian where customers were not only charged for GST but also sales and service tax (SST).
"Some of the stores charged the six per cent GST and the 10 per cent SST," he said.
Alias said a shop in Serian had not registered for the GST but was selling its goods at an exorbitant price.
"For example, the shop was selling canned drinks at RM2.00 each when in fact it had obtained the item for RM1.10 each from the supplier," he said.