PNoy: 'No pressure from Iglesia Ni Cristo to replace BIR chief'


President Aquino clarified Monday there was no issue between him and the Iglesia ni Cristo (INC), which was reportedly asking for the head of Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Commissioner Kim Henares.

Aquino made the statement amid rumors of pressure from the influential INC to replace Henares by a certain Imelda Fernandez.

The Palace, however, had said there are no plans to replace the commissioner.

Aquino likewise said that the BIR, under the leadership of Henares, set another collection record.

“Don’t forget that the targets are placed really, really high and the difference from the target is very minimal, which to my mind says: mahusay iyong ginagawa nung tao, bakit mo papalitan (She’s doing well, why replace her?) That seems illogical.”

Malacañang earlier denied reports that Henares was being eyed as replacement for Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon.

The President said that there would be no Cabinet revamp.

A text purportedly sent from the INC is going viral among the brethren.

" Ipinakita at ipa2kita ang pagkakaisa ng mga kapatid. Nahaharap sa matinding paguusig ng pamahalaan ang IGLESIA sapagkat ang ating presidente na walang utang na loob kung hindi dahil sa atin wala siya sa pwesto nya. Ipinahold ang mga materyales para sa dome na ginagawa sa Bulacan. saan daw tayo kumukuha ng budget para sa pagpapatayo ng malaking dome?
Pass to all inc."

There is no such text authorized or allowed by the INC administration. This text spread when the INC held its medical and dental mission last Monday, October 14.

READ: No classes on Monday in Manila due to Iglesia Ni Cristo's "Kabayan Ko, Kapatid Ko" Lingap sa Mamamayan medical and dental mission

Based on several accounts, the story goes that imported construction materials to be used for the Philippine Arena were stopped at the Bureau of Customs.

Philippine Arena: World's largest domed arena
Philippine Arena UPDATES (Ciudad de Victoria and New Net 25 building)

On the issue of tax audit, BIR said it was not investigating the INC for any tax liabilities.

“No such order was received from the President. And there is no on-going investigation of the INC as of this writing.”

Henares said the bureau got wind of text messages that said the BIR was looking into the tax affairs of the influential religious organization supposedly upon orders of Aquino.

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