Robredo: We’ve been pushing for excise tax suspension since 2018

Vice President Leni Robredo on Sunday reiterated the opposition’s call to suspend the excise tax on fuel products, a suggestion they had been making since 2018.

Robredo made the statement during her weekly radio program, commenting on at least three presidential aspirants suddenly joining calls to lower the excise tax on fuel products and even on electricity to help ordinary Filipinos.

But Robredo lamented that just because the elections were near, this was when these aspirants joined their call to decrease the excise tax on fuel products, which was previously widely rejected merely because the opposition proposed it.

“So may nagtanong nga sa akin, Ka Ely, kahapon na, o iyong ibang presidentiables nag-comment sa excise tax on oil. Sinabi ko, Ka Ely, na, ‘actually, naging sirang plaka na tayo niyan, eh,'” Robredo, who is also a presidential aspirant, said.

(Some people have been asking me about the presidentiables who commented on the excise tax on oil. I answered that we had been like a broken record on the matter.)

“At the time, tayo lang yata iyong isa sa very few na nagko-comment about it, na nagsalita tayo kasi… 2018 pa, Ka Ely, 2018 pa nananawagan na tayo ng suspension ng excise tax on fuel, ‘di ba? Kaya lang siguro dahil oposisyon tayo, minamasama,” she said.

(We are the only few who commented on it and we have been talking about this since 2018. We have been calling for a suspension since 2018. But because we are the opposition, this was not accepted.)

“At nakakalungkot lang na kung kailan mag-e-eleksyon, saka lang may magjo-join doon sa chorus natin,” she further pointed out.

(It is just sad that during the elections, people will start joining our calls.)

Nevertheless, since more people are joining the calls to lower excise taxes, Robredo hoped that the government would heed their proposal.

“So sa akin, again, 2018 pa natin ito hinihingi, continuing iyong ating paghihingi dahil iyong situwasyon nangyari ulit. Pero mas masaya ako ngayon, Ka Ely, mas marami na kaming humihingi, baka sakaling aaksyunan na. Kasi iyong 2018, parang kakaunti lang tayo,” she said.

(For me, since we have been pushing this since 2018, we still reiterate our calls. But I am happier today because other people are also pushing for this, it may be implemented.)

Further, she called for expanding the Pantawid Pasada Program to other sectors that are also in need of subsidies for fuel.

“Kasama dito iyong mga magsasaka na nag-o-operate ng mga farm equipment, iyong mga fisherfolk na nag-o-operate ng kanilang mga bangka na nangangailangan ng krudo,” she said.

(This includes farmers for their farm equipment, fisherfolk for their boats that need to be operated using fuel.)

— DVM, GMA News

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