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Davao mayor says taxes are hurting wage earners

/ 12:20 AM June 05, 2015
Rodrigo Duterte 1

Davao Mayor Rodrigo Duterte. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO / MARIANNE BERMUDEZ

MATANAO, Davao del Sur—Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, who is being touted to be a presidential candidate, said he would spare individuals earning P25,000 or less a month from paying income taxes.

Speaking at the 35th general assembly of members of the Davao del Sur Electric Cooperative here, Duterte said he wants every family, especially those who can barely make ends meet, to be able to put food on the table.

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He said regular wage earners, like policemen and teachers, are finding it difficult to make ends meet because taxes are eating so much of their incomes.

“I have asked a policeman how much his take-home pay is,” said Duterte. “He said only P1,000 because he has four children in college. How ironic is that?” Duterte said.

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“I am not campaigning but if I have my way, those earning P25,000 a month and below would not have to pay tax,” he said as the crowd of over 10,000 applauded.

Duterte also said he would seek to increase the take-home pay of teachers.

“How can they not borrow when their take-home pay is only about P600?” Duterte said.

He also reiterated an earlier stand on free irrigation for farmers.

Duterte continues to play coy about running for President in next year’s national elections, although his supporters continue to prop him as a strong candidate.

Under existing laws, minimum wage earners (with an average salary of P301 per day) are exempted from paying income taxes and filing income tax returns.

Holiday pay, overtime pay, night shift differential pay and hazard pay of minimum wage earners are also currently exempt from taxation.

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Overseas Filipino workers are also not required to pay taxes on income they receive abroad. Eldie Aguirre with a report from Orlando Dinoy, Inquirer Mindanao and Rafael Antonio, Inquirer Research

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