By JO ERLINDA G. NEBRES
Special to Philippines Today USA
QUEZON CITY (PhilAmPress) – Even as he paid more than what he paid a year ago, world boxing icon and Congressman Emmanuel D. Pacquiao has slid to the second top individual taxpayer in the Philippines from number one a taxable year ago, but he remains the top celebrity taxpayer in the country.
This as Jacinto “Jack” Ng of the popular biscuit firm Rebisco, who was not even in the top 500 taxpayers the previous year, paid a whopping P280.1 million in personal income tax for income earned in 2014, 33 percent higher than the P210.3 million paid by Pacquiao.
According to records of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), the only eight-division boxing champion was No. 1 taxpayer in 2013 with taxes paid totaling P163.84 million, 64 percent more than the 2013 No. 2 paid, P99.6 million by a certain Juanito Pornuevo Alcantara.
Presidential sister and TV personality Kristina “Kris” Bernadette Cojuangco is the 6th highest payer with P54.53 million for income in 2014.
Many newcomers and current heartthrob in showbiz are also in the list of top 500 individual taxpayers for 2014 as listed by the BIR. They include Coco Martin, Kathryn Bernardo, Jodi Sta. Maria and newly married Love Marie Ongpauco who is popularly known as Heart Evangelista-Escudero.
Other personalities in the list are actress-singer Sharon Cuneta Pangilinan (13th, P49.12 million), actor John Lloyd Espidol Cruz (22nd, P37.70 million), actress Anne Ojales Curtis-Smith (32nd, P31.47 million), TV host, actor, comedian and singer-composer Marvic “Vic” Castelo Sotto (45th, P27 million), Piolo Jose Nonato Pascual (48th, P26.4 million), Sarah Asher Tua Geronimo (72nd, P21.4 million) and Rodel Pacheco Nacianceno or Coco Martin (66th, P22 million).
Also on top of the list of BIR are actor Derek Arthur Paggao Ramsay (90th, P20 million), former Zamboanga del Norte congressman and show promoter and producer Romeo Jalosjos (78th, P20.73 million), GMA network top executive Felipe Lapus Gozon (79th, P20.7 million), new mother, actress and TV host Marian Rivera Gracia Dantes) (98th, P19 million) and ABS-CBN former president and now chief content officer Ma. Rosario “Charo” Santos-Concio (101st, P18.76 million).
Others in the list are broadcaster Miguel “Mike” Castro Enriquez (103rd, P18.5 million), comedian Beethoven del Valle Bunagan popularly known as Michael V, (121st, P16.5 million), actress and tv host Judy Ann Santos Agoncillo (133rd, P15.9 million), actor, comedian and singer Jose Marie Borja Viceral or Vice Ganda (137th, P15.7 milion), actress Kimberly “Kim” Sue Yap Chiu (187th, P12.7 million), Celestine “Toni” Cruz Gonzaga (192nd, P12.6 million).
Actor Robinhood “Robin” Carino Padilla is also on top at 197th with P12.5 million in tax payment with tv host and talent manager Eugenio “Boy” Romerica Abunda Jr. (202nd, P12.4 million), broadcaster and former Vice President Manuel “Noli” Leuterio de Castro Jr. (222nd, P11.7 million), actor, singer-composer and comedian Herminio “Ogie” Lualhati Alcasid Jr. (235th, P10.9 million), GMA network’s Menardo Jimenez (284tth, P9.8 million), actor Richard Edison Uy Yap (310th,P9.4 million), singer Regina “Regine” Encarnacion Ansong Velasquez (317th, P9.3 million) and broadcaster Jessica Aspiras Soho (344th, P8.9 million).
Also in the list of top 500 taxpayers are actress Angelica Colmenares who is popularly known as Angel Locsin (354th, P8.7 million), Jodi Chrissie Africano Sta. Maria (381st, P8.3 million), directress Olivia Manalili Lamasan (407th, P8.1 million), Kathryn Chandria Manuel Bernardo (414th, P8 million), and Love Marie Payawal Ongpauco more popularly known as Heart Evangelista-Escudero (445th, P7.6 million).
Visibly not in the list are former top taxpayers actor, singer, composer and tv host Willie Revillame,
actress Angelica Panganiban, model and actress Solenn Heusaff, actor and tv host Luis Manzano actor, Ryan Agoncillo, and Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr.
Another celebrity of sort who is on the list of top 100 taxpayers is alleged jueteng lord Rodolfo “Bong” Quijano Pineda, the husband of Pampanga Governor Lilia G. Pineda. From 84th, the alleged gambling lord jumped to the 47th slot in the latest top taxpayers’ list, after dishing out P26.6 million to Kim Henares’ tax drive, P8 million more than what he had shelled out in 2013.
For 2014, Pineda continued with the honor of having paid more personal income tax than taipan Henry Sy (P25.6 million), Del Monte’s Joselito Campos Jr. (P24.6 million), or PAL/PNB owner Lucio Tan (P16.2 million).
“We are required by law to list the top taxpayers. Actually, we should list all taxpayers, but that’s too many so we just list the income taxpayers,” BIR Commissioner Kim Jacinto-Henares said.
The BIR annual list has become a source of controversy, particularly over questions on whether public personalities in the list have actually paid the right taxes. Henares said this should not be the case.
“This is just a list. This does not reflect tax compliance in any way,” the BIR chief pointed out.
According to the National Internal Revenue Code, final tax is imposed on passive income such as prizes, winnings, royalties and cash dividends. The rate of tax differs on the kind of income one generates.
For instance, prizes and other winnings are charged 20 percent final taxes, which are automatically deducted and are not included in income tax returns filed every year.
“This does not reflect the wealth of the person because it only depends on what you earn and does not include those which are charged with final taxes,” Henares explained.(Jo Erlinda G. Nebres/PhilAmPress)