“…All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty together again.”
That’s how the nursery rhyme goes. And now watch how the world’s largest arena makes it’s own great fall. Fresh from Inquirer.net [credits to Bro. Mario for showing me the link] –
“Builder of INC’s colossal Philippine Arena faces smuggling case
The Bureau of Customs (BOC) on Wednesday said it was running after property developer New San Jose Builders Inc., which allegedly failed to pay taxes for importing construction materials when it built the Iglesia ni Cristo’s (INC) massive Philippine Arena.
In a statement, the BOC said it transmitted a smuggling complaint to the Office of the Solicitor General on Tuesday.
Customs Commissioner Nicanor E. Faeldon also told reporters that New San Jose Builders’ tax dues had reached P1 billion for importing construction materials even as it invoked the tax-free perks under Republic Act No. 9593 or the Tourism Act of 2009. The law gives away incentives to firms within tourism enterprise zones.
The owner of New San Jose Builders, Inc. is Jose “Jerry” Acuzar. And who is Mr. Acuzar? –
“Jose “Jerry” Acuzar, brother-in-law of [former] Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr., is the chair of New San Jose Builders Inc. (NSJBI).
In an interview with the Inquirer in May 2012, he described NSJBI as “the go-to guys for landscaping and steel works” during its early years. Acuzar cites House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte and former Manila Mayor Lito Atienza among his mentors.
Acuzar’s NSJBI, which holds office in Quezon City, was incorporated in 1986. It was initially contracted to develop National Housing Authority land and infrastructure in Bagong Silang and nearby areas in Caloocan City.
Over the years, NSJBI has been involved in the 10-hectare Bureau of Internal Revenue housing project in Fairview, the renovation and expansion of the Court of Appeals building, the building of the Quezon City Hall of Justice and the construction of a portion of Southern Tagalog Arterial Road, among other projects.
Recently, NSJBI built condominiums, such as Victoria Towers in Quezon City and three-tower luxury development The Fort Victoria in Bonifacio Global City.
Acuzar also owns heritage town Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar in Bagac, Bataan. In June 2011, Ochoa came under fire for allegedly owning a P40-million mansion in White Plains, Quezon City. Ochoa said the house was owned by Acuzar and his wife, Tess.
And who could forget the Ali (Atienza) and Jet’s (Acuzar) wedding held at the Acuzar’s resort in Bataan. EVM and Jun Santos were the Godparents in the wedding of the year held inside an old Catholic Church. In fairness however, the two didn’t attend the affair but still never declined to become godparents to the newlyweds.
Now, when you start to ask how San Jose Builders were able to continue importing materials from abroad without proper permits during the early years leading to 2014, the answer would be quite obvious. The more interesting question is why has the government now shown some clout in looking into these abuses by certain organizations? I’m sure Customs Commissioner Faeldon consulted his boss before going all out in divulging this information. So our President does have two balls after all. For a moment there, I had thought he lacked one. Now, let’s all wait and see how the cookie crumbles.
While waiting, come on guys, why so serious? Watch Fast and Furious 8. From start to finish it’ll keep you on edge. I enjoyed it immensely but my wife as usual slept it out and when the post credits started she slowly raised her head and half-consciously asked –
“Tapos na ba? …[Is it over?]” To which I replied in a smile, “Malapit na malapit na [Soon, very soon]…”