Valte: I was not aware of anti-VAT bill
A day after she dared legislators to file a bill opposing the 12-percent value-added tax (VAT) on oil, deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte apologized to Bayan Muna party-list Representative Teodoro Casiño who, it turned out, had filed such a measure more than a year ago.
“I apologize if I do not have his entire legislative history in my head,” Valte said Sunday. Casiño had filed House Bill No. 2719 on Aug. 23, 2010.
“Good for you, Congressman Casiño,” Valte added, in an interview over government radio station dzRB.
Valte, however, denied Casiño’s claim that Malacañang favored the big oil companies over consumers on the issue of high oil prices.
“It is not true that Malacañang has such an order… that’s false,” she said.
Asked if the Palace would support Casiño’s bill, Valte said it had not been taken up and was not one of its priority measures.
“I don’t remember that it’s been discussed (in Malacañang),” she said.
Told that Congress was unlikely to tackle the anti-VAT measure because the session will end before the end of the month, Valte said the Palace “cannot speak for Congress.” Christine O. Avendaño