Mataram, West Nusa Tenggara. Businesspeople must not hire tax officials as consultants because of the possibility for corruption, Indonesia’s tax chief has said.
Tax officials have been implicated in several recent high-profile graft scandals, with Gayus Tambunan and Dhana Widyatmika the best-known examples.
“Businesspeople must not ask tax officers to become tax consultants,” the director general of taxation, Fuad Rahmany, said during an event in Mataram on Saturday. “Otherwise they will become like Gayus.”
Fuad said taxpayers were required to pay their taxes through banks and that tax officials were not allowed to provide consultation services for companies over tax payments or other tax-related business.
“In the case of Gayus, he collaborated with taxpayers,” he said.
The Finance Ministry’s tax directorate strictly forbids tax officials from working as consultants, he said.
The office, he added, will continue to introduce reforms aimed at improving its integrity and professionalism.
Last year, public confidence in tax reform was dealt a major blow when authorities discovered large amounts of rupiah, dollars and gold in bank accounts belonging to Dhana. The case was reminiscent of Gayus’s, who was arrested after investigators found more than Rp 100 billion ($10.6 million) in his bank accounts.
In June, the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) arrested a tax official in Sidoarjo, East Java, Tomy Hendratno, for taking a Rp 280 million bribe.