21 November 2012
Indignant Workers Condemn the New Regressive Sin Tax Law,
Vowed to Continue the Struggle
WITHSTANDING the lopsided 15-2 vote of the Senators in the passage of the Sin Tax Reform Law, indignant workers trooped to the Senate to condemn the passage of a law that they claim to be blatantly anti-poor, regressive and unconstitutional.
The Peoples Coalition Against Regressive Taxation (PCART) reiterated that the country's poor composed of the millions of Filipino workers, farmers, the urban and rural poor shall be the sole bearers of the negative impacts of a pass-on tax while the politicians gain billions in tax revenues and the tobacco and alcohol capitalists continue to reap trillions in profit. The coalition claimed that the sin tax issue was one of the grandest schemes of collusion and compromise among the country's elite since Aquino came into power.
According to Gie Relova, Secretary-General of the National Capital Region and Rizal chapter of Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP-NCRR),"The Senate has time and again shed its true colors, it has proven that the Senate as an institution will remain to be blind, deaf and mute to the interests of the toiling masses and at the same time it devotedly kisses the feet of the local elite and the multinational investors".
"With the passage of the sin tax law, the Senate played its role in the massacre of jobs and livelihoods of millions of workers and farmers by acting as the gravediggers that placed the final nail in the coffin as the Department of Finance acted as the butcher and Senator Franklin as their designated hitman and the President Aquino as the mastermind" the BMP leader alleged.
For Rodel Atienza, Union President of the Philip Morris Fortune Tobacco Corporation, "As the senators wine and dine and congratulate each other, we pledge that the workers, the vendors, the farmers shall have the last laugh on the matter. We shall mobilize our numbers and networks to launch a massive negative campaign and make them pay heavily in the coming elections".
The BMP and its allied organizations vowed to continue the struggle to fight for a progressive system of taxation in the country.