Juday on pork barrel scam: 'It's unfair'
MANILA -- Having once faced charges of tax evasion of which she has been cleared, actress Judy Ann Santos couldn't help but be angered when talking about the controversial pork barrel scam.
Santos said it's unfair that celebrities are being targeted for tax evasion only to find out that the people's taxes are going into the pockets of unscrupulous individuals.
"Parang lumalabas kami pa ang hindi nagbabayad ng tax. Eh kami nga ang bayad ng bayad ng tax. Umiinit na 'yung ulo ko," Santos said in an interview on Wednesday.
The tax case against Santos stemmed from her alleged inaccurate declaration of income derived from her talent fees and movie and product endorsements for taxable year 2002 in her annual income tax return filed with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).
But early this year, the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) absolved the actress in the tax evasion case because she only underdeclared her income. However, the court ordered Santos to pay over P3.4 million for her income tax deficiency for the year 2002, and an additional 20 percent interest every year as tax penalty and delinquency interest.
On Wednesday, Santos said she has no problem paying taxes.
"Wala namang problema sa pagbabayad ng tax. Responsibilidad natin 'yon bilang mamamayang Filipino, responsibilidad natin 'yon bilang nagta-trabaho, pero sana ay nakikita natin kung saan napupunta," the actress said.
That's why she feels angered when she found out about the scam.
"Lahat naman tayo isa tayo sa pagdaramdam na 'bakit ganoon?' Lahat naman tayo ay nagta-trabaho ng tama at sapat para mayroon tayong maipakain sa pamilya natin at makaipon tayo," she said.
"Kasi hindi naman biro 'yung ginagawa natin. Para sa isang artista, dugo, pawis at puyat na literal ang nangyayari. Sana nailagay sa tama. Sana nabantayan. Sana ay hindi na muling mangyari pero posible ba yon? Sa Pilipinas, may posible ba?" the actress added.
On Thursday, the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee continued its investigation on the pork barrel, following the arrest of businesswoman Janet Napoles, the alleged mastermind of the scam.