Duterte: “Former President Waived Billions Owed by Power Plant”

Dahil sa Senate hearing ni Sen. Leila De Lima, natabunan ang issue ng pagsasampa ng kaso laban kay dating Pangulong Noynoy Aquino dahil sa katiwalian at smuggling involving Shell, amounting to 100 billion pesos, at ang isang blind item ni Presidente Duterte na tila patungkol pa rin kay PNoy pero sa ibang kahalintulad na kaso naman. President Rodrigo Duterte alleged last Sept. 13, that a former President waived 7 billion pesos in government receivables from a power plant for unknown reasons.

In a speech to air force personnel at the Villamor Airbase in Pasay City, President Duterte said he would not allow the government to lose money because of a failure to collect proper taxes in his administration, unlike a former President.

“I’m telling everybody: Do not do it in my time because I promised the Filipino a clean government. It will be a clean government. There will be no corruption. Even the exemption of taxes and waiver of billions. The game here involves billions, believe me.

“We have a receivable from an energy plant of P7 billion. It was waived. For what reason? I really do not know.”

And only one man can waive it. You waived the P7 billion for what? There was no payment involved as long as it favors the rich,” Duterte said.

Duterte did not identify the company involved and the administration that allowed the waiver.

However, President Benigno Aquino III issued an executive order in 2011 to condone around P6 billion in real property taxes owed by a power plant in Quezon province, saying paying the back taxes "will trigger massive direct liabilities on the part of [National Power Corp./Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation], increase the cost of electricity, and may trigger further cross-defaults, and colossal economic losses across all sectors."

Another executive order issued in 2014 reduced tax rates for independent power producers for the same reasons.

It is unclear whether that is the case that Duterte was referring to. Officials could not say who were being alluded to by the president.

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