BIR Employees Seek Lifestyle Checks

MANILA, Philippines --- Rank-and-file employees of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) asked Revenue Commissioner Kim S. Jacinto-Henares over the weekend to consider requiring tax collectors seeking key field positions like revenue district officer, or regional director to disclose their Peso and Foreign Currency deposits before they are considered for appointment.

Retired revenue officials supported the move saying it will be in line with President Aquino's desire for transparency and decency in the government service.

Aside from making it easier for Ms. Henares to select the most qualified and deserving people to head sensitive positions, they said this will eliminate the traditional and pernicious ''padrino'' system in the transfer and promotion of personnel to important posts.

It is common knowledge, however, that Ms. Henares had been rejecting whatever attempts and pressure by influential individuals in and out of the government service to promote their protegees in the bureau.

They said the proposal should not be confined to the BIR alone but other sensitive government offices like the Bureau of Customs and the Department of Public Works and Highways where some officials were suspected of having ill-gotten wealth stashed away in banks.

BIR officials and employees got the idea regarding the disclosure of bank accounts from the challenge hurled by Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona to 188 members of the House of Representatives who signed the impeachment complaint against him.

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