By Chito Chavez
Quezon City Councilor Winston “Winnie” Castelo wants concerned authorities to scrutinize if the Chinese nationals working for Philippine Offshore Gaming Operations (POGO) in the country most especially in Quezon City have complied with the necessary requirements.
He said that these should include pertinent documents specifically working permits since they are considered as migrant workers.
Castelo issued the call as reports that POGO employees mostly Chinese nationals have failed to pay their taxes.
The former Second District Rep. also expressed apprehensions that these Chinese nationals might not be paying the necessary taxes allotted for the city government despite POGO’s mounting popularity in the Philippines.
Castelo also called the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) to look into this matter to make sure that these Chinese nationals working for different POGO branches in QC are paying city hall the correct taxes since they are foreigners working in the country.
He stressed that if ever these foreigners are not paying their taxes, this will eventually hamper future projects of the City Government and likewise imperils QC’s coffer that could also be allotted to alleviate the poor and impoverished condition of QC residents.
Castelo also proposed the idea for the Bureau of Immigration (BI) to step into this issue to check and validate whether the said Chinese nationals have secured proper documents and working permits before they can work in the country as required and covered by Philippine laws.
However, Castelo has emphasized that he is not against the idea of Chinese nationals working for POGO.
But, Castelo said “things should be put in proper places and perspective so as not to violate Philippines laws and particularly paying the required taxes for the government should be observed by anybody regardless of any nationality’’.
“Kailangan tignan kung nagbabayad ba ng tamang buwis ang mga Chinese nationals na ito. Kasi kawawa naman ang ating pamahalaan kung hindi sila nagbabayad ng buwis, kaya hinihiling natin sa BIR na tignan kung may binabayarang buwis ang mga ito. Ang kanilang ibabayad na buwis ay pakikinabangan ng QC Government para sa mga naka-linyang projects nito sa darating na hinaharap (We need to see to it that these Chinese nationals are paying the right taxes. The government will incur huge losses if the right taxes are not paid that is why I want the BIR to look into the matter. The taxes they should pay will benefit the Quezon City government where these may be used to implement projects that have been lined up in the future),” Castelo concluded.