Manila Standard : Incoming govt no tolerance for graft, corruption

By Rey E. Requejo | Manila Standard

While his administration won’t shelve any pending corruption cases, President-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said “let’s forget the past” in relation to prevailing corruption at the Bureau of Internal Revenue and Bureau of Customs.

Marcos clarified he would only go after those personalities who will be involved in corruption activities under his term. He stressed there should be no place for corruption in the government.

“Let’s forget about the past. I’ll say, ‘That’s not under my watch, it’s not under my administration.’ Now that it’s my administration, corruption will have no place,” he said.

“If there’s still corrupt individuals, we will go after them,” Marcos stressed. “Kalimutan na lang natin ‘yung nakaraan. (Let’s forget the past.)”

Sought for clarification, lawyer Trixie Cruz-Angeles, picked by Marcos to be the incoming Press Secretary, said the president-elect does not want to focus on the “sins of the past” but “pending cases will continue.”

“Pending cases will continue because they’re pending cases. I think the approach as he had expounded in previous interviews is simply to not to concentrate too much on fault-finding or on the sins of the past,” Cruz-Angeles said.

Marcos, meanwhile, believed that there is a need to “codify our tax” to make it simpler and more understandable for Filipinos.

“Now in my discussions with our legislators yesterday, we are trying to create some fiscal space. So that to reduce the load on ordinary citizens and maybe move the load up, the tax load up and there’s also distribution of wealth implications to that which are very very important. It’s one of the areas that I think we have to work on very hard,” Marcos said.

He is also eyeing to reduce tax collections on sectors still suffering from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“That means MSMEs, the agricultural sector and transport, we will reduce the tax collections on those sectors,” Marcos said.