Friday, March 29, 2013

Busy March

It has been a busy month for Paul so far, that I have no time to update this blog of mine for the past month.

IRAS VES Exercise

I had gone for the training on 1 March, and was rather surprised that the IRAS trainers had made some basic mistakes during the training session. I was rather surprised that the trainers & officers still believe that I should have kept the errors under wraps. Personally I feel that the volunteers should be made known of all these errors as they may lead to the taxpayers doing the wrong thing under the wrong coaching of the trainers to the volunteers. Fortunately, the right thing was done in the end.

I was rather surprised how some volunteers were doing the e-filing for the taxpayers. It is either the training was not well conducted, or some of them were sleeping when the lecture was conducted. How could such an important point, printing the consolidated statement for the taxpayer to verify if the entries entered are correct are missed out during printing. How can PA’s instructions not be disseminated to all CCs during e-filing?

Work

This was expected as this was the start of every tax agent’s peak period.I just hope that my new colleague can be more stable in her work and cause less anxiety to us and my bosses.

Grassroots Activities

As I was quite busy this month, I was only able to help out in the recycling project as I thought it was a meaningful project.

Hope that the month of April will be better. 

Sunday, March 03, 2013

IRAS VES Training Session

I was not very keen to attend the session as they are covering the things that I know, by virtue that I am working in this line for the past 11 years and  I have been seething with anger about one of the fellow volunteers stealing away the other volunteer’s credit for the VES exercise the past two years mentioned in 2 blog posts ago.

This year, I roped in 2 new friends of mine, Patricia & Baoshan  to join us as they are  interested to learn more about personal income tax. It is good to see more young people coming forward to help in our common cause.

The training was alright, but I was surprised that the IRAS trainers made several mistakes in the training session which I thought it was not acceptable as such mistakes have a huge impact on a taxpayer’s compliance records.

I hope that the coming VES will not be plagued by problems like last year.

Dinner With The PM

2013-02-26 19.24.202013-02-26 19.47.052013-02-26 20.50.182013-02-26 20.50.25

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I had not been expected to be invited to the Istana Garden Party on 26 Feb 2013, by the Prime Minister & The Cabinet. When the email invitation first came in early Jan, I thought it is for the appreciation for my Grassroots work in my constituency, but after checking with my constituency manager, she said that she did not nominate me for the dinner. That was when I suspected that it was for my IRAS Volunteer E-filing service. I did not want to go at first but at my mum’s urging, I decided to go for my 1st Istana dinner. I specially took leave to attend the dinner as I know it would be rushing for me to get to the Istana from my work place, even though it is 2 MRT stations away.

I was a little apprehensive about the dinner as I knew I would be alone. The fortunate thing was that by virtue that I am a Grassroots Leader, I managed to ask my fellow grassroots leader friend, Fanny to reserve a seat for me. At least sitting with people that I know makes the dinner more comfortable. In the end, I managed to sit with David, Fanny, Mork & my MP, Dr Intan. I was glad that she offered to give me a ride to KK Hospital, while fellow Grassroots Leader, Lynette, whom I knew at the dinner that night, offered me a ride home from KKH.

I would like to thank all of them for making my visit to the Istana Garden an enjoyable one.

Disappointment

It is just the 1st quarter of the year, but I am very disappointed with a friend of mine, whom I am not naming, as I am just keeping this friend as a hi & bye friend after she returns the money that she owes me. To think that my mum had asked me to go steady with her after meeting her a few times and thought that she was the one for me at first. It is fortunate that I did not pursue her further as I really could not tolerate her bad habits.

This was what she did, to my fellow IRAS volunteer friend, A after they were paired together for the IRAS Volunteer e-filing exercise at the same CC for the last two years. I was surprised that A, who is a very active volunteer & very keen on taxation after taking up the VES with us, was hesitating when the VES was open for registration in late Jan. I have tried to persuade her to sign up early, but to no avail. It was until last Saturday, that she decided to sign up. By then, it was already quite full, so she had to settle for another CC to volunteer.

The next day, I called A to find out the reasons for her delay in signing up. I was not surprised when she told me that she was disappointed that she was not nominated for an award last year, despite the fact that she turned up for about 5 sessions. I do know that different CC management staff have their different way of doing things, but I liked the way that the CC which I was at was doing. It was to nominate for all volunteers and let IRAS decide on the award winners which I thought was a fairer system as every volunteer contributed in a way or another.

It was the second part of A’s revelation that shook me. She said that our common friend had copied the particulars of the taxpayers that A served as her own. I was wondering why this person, whose tax knowledge is like half past six, and always clinging onto me for help was able to get outstanding volunteer award for the past 2 years. My mum was smart enough to guess ahead of me for this, and she finally understood why I decided not to pursue this lady.

With this stealing of credit, which is equal to a contravention of the Official Secrets Act that we signed, I really told her off via a text message. She denied that she had done it and pointed an accusing finger at A for being late and giving wrong information.

I had confidence in A was telling me the truth and our friend was lying big time. Therefore I decided to give A the opportunity to prove herself on the VES Facebook Page by asking her to help me to answer some of the questions raised. I hope with that, I can try to help her to get the award.

Sometimes, I wonder why do people want the reward so badly that they stooped so low to steal the credit of others and take it as theirs?

Change

It has been a while since I last blogged. My mood have been affected by my work recently. The fortunate thing was that there was singing, JJ...