MANILA—President Rodrigo Duterte has set his sights on the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) as his next target in the government's anti-corruption campaign.
"Ang corruption is taas. Kaya dito ko binabantayan. Pero ‘yang masabi mo mga corrupt diyan sa baba, well of course, it affects a lot of Filipinos. Checkpoint, Customs, BIR. Kaya ang sunod BIR," he said during the inauguration of a solar-power project in Romblon Wednesday.
(Corruption is at the upper level. I'm watching over that. But those involved in corruption in the lower level, it affects a lot of Filipinos. Checkpoint, Customs, BIR. BIR is next.)
The President said he wants reforms in the country's tax system to eliminate anomalies.
"Sabi niya, ‘Oh sige magbayad ka lang nito. Pero OK, we will assess you at P5 million. Ibigay mo sa amin ang P2 million, P3 [million] ang ibayad mo'," he said.
(The examiner will tell you to pay a certain amount. But we will assess you at P5 million. Give us the P2 million and you'll pay us P3 million instead.)
"Ang nabubusog diyan ang examiners," he added.
In his effort to rid government agencies of corruption, Duterte dismissed several officials and employees of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) in July.
"Itong sa Customs ‘yung last time, I really insisted. I’m not satisfied with 6 or 7 of you going out. I want the 64 with cases in Customs dismissed. And I will insist on that even if I have to put my foot down as president," he said.