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BIR enforces stricter ‘no gift policy’

Foodstuffs and even small items are included in the unprecedented “no gift policy” of the new administration of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).

This was made clear over the weekend when a birthday cake for an employee was not allowed to be delivered at the project management and implementation service (PMIS) located at the fourth floor of the main building.

It was the colleague of the celebrant who chipped in for the cake worth R500, but security guards at the lobby did not allow the cake to be brought to her room.

The guards insisted that the cake came from a taxpayer. They said, however, that deliveries of packed foods from fast food eateries are allowed.

They said they were just following orders from the chief of the internal investigation division tasked to implemented the tough policy of new Internal Revenue Commissioner Caesar Dulay as part of his program of ending the graft and bureau.

BIR was described by President Duterte as one of the epicenter of corruption in the government service.

The BIR chief has earlier issued a memorandum to revenue officials and employees nationwide to refrain from soliciting or accepting gifts.

The first casualty of his directive was a revenue district officer in Davao City who was immediately transferred to “freezer” when he caused the delivery of a basket of fruits and wine to Dulay’s office. (Jun Ramirez)