When President-elect Rodrigo Duterte named the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) as one of the most corrupt agencies in the Philippines, BIR chief Kim Henares said that she felt sad over the incoming president’s criticism.
Henares said that the efforts of the bureau’s employees are not recognized.
“Instead of recognizing the efforts of the men and women in the service who have been working hard to increase collection to unprecedented level, they were vilified,” she said.
Henares also cited the commission’s accomplishments, specifying the “annual double-digit collection growth rate” in the last six years. While graft and corruption is still present in the bureau, “like in many other government and private offices,” she said that the BIR has managed to significantly reduce corruption, citing Social Weather Station surveys as proof.
On June 3, The Daily Tribune reported that the bureau took offense after hearing about Duterte’s corrupt comments, adding that a ranking official, Deputy Commissioner Lilia Guillermo, would take the lead in the mass resignation within BIR. The newspaper claimed to have interviewed Guillermo.
The report was picked up by several news sites and went viral.
But on June 6, BIR Public Information and Education Division chief Reymari De La Cruz wrote a letter to The Daily Tribune Editor-in-Chief Ninez Cacho-Olivares denying the newspaper report on mass resignation written by Ed Velasco.
The letter also said that Guillermo denied giving an interview to Velasco.
BIR employees say no reason to resign, abandon mandate, insinuate Tribune article ALL LIES pic.twitter.com/Nj52dFuKop
— Jacque Manabat (@jacquemanabat) June 6, 2016
While hurt over Duterte’s statements, it was not enough reason for them to resign.
“While we may have been hurt by the statements of President-elect Duterte, said statements are not enough reasons for us to resign and abandon our mandate to collect taxes for nation-building.”
The bureau employees expressed how they would treat Duterte’s comments as a “challenge for us to rise up and prove him wrong.”
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