BIR chief enforces "Oplan Kandado" on 6 popular Pangasinan restaurants

July 17, 2009 10:44 pm 

By Leonardo V. Micua

CALASIAO, Pangasinan, July 18 — Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Commissioner Sixto Esquivas personally led in implementing on Friday his agency's “Oplan Kandado" on six restaurants in Pangasinan not paying the right amount of taxes to the government.

Accompanied by five deputy commissioners and personnel of the BIR regional office, Esquivas closed down Matutina’s 1 and 2 and Nena’s Restaurant on Tondaligan Park in Dagupan City, Silverio’s Restaurant on Dawel, also in Dagupan; Matutina’s branch in Urdaneta City; and Silverio’s branch in Binmaley.

The move put owners of these business establishments and their customers in total surprise as no less than the highest official of the BIR came to enforce “Oplan Kandado.”

The six restaurants will remain closed for five days or until they shall have settled in full their tax deficiencies.

This was only the first operation of its kind in Pangasinan but it served warning to other tax cheats that they will suffer the same fate sooner or later if they will continue with their illegal business practice.

Esquevas said “Oplan Kandado” is a BIR strategy of compelling businessmen to pay the right amount of taxes to the government by shutting down their establishments summarily if they are found to be really cheating in their tax payments. All these restaurants specialize in seafood cuisine, including the tasty charcoal-cooked Dagupan bangus, and are favorite dining places of top government officials, including rich and influential people, visitors and tourists.

“I’m hoping that with this show of force, we will be able to prove to everybody that BIR really means business," Esquivas said.

He warned that this is just the start and many more establishments which continuously renege in their obligations to pay the right amount of taxes to the government will suffer the same fate.

He said it is not just the commissioner who came to enforce "Oplan Kandado" but also members of the entire management committee “who are behind me all the way.”

Esquivas revealed there were about 50 other business establishments in other parts of the country similarly closed down under "Oplan Kandado" which, he added, uses the so-called “fear factor” to compel businesses to pay the right amount of taxes.

The BIR commissioner said owners of the establishments closed down by "Oplan Kandado" were given a 48-hour notice to explain to the BIR regional review board why they should not be closed indefinitely for not paying the right amount of taxes.

Prior to this, a five-day notice was also given to the owners of the establishments to comply with the Value Added Tax law but they simply ignored this, he added. (PNA)

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