Cigarette firm’s closure to hurt thousands of tobacco farmers

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Hundreds of thousands of Filipinos supposedly will be affected if the government makes good its threat to close down homegrown tobacco company Mighty Corp.

Retired Regional Trial Court judge Oscar Barrientos, executive vice president of the embattled firm, over the weekend said about 7,000 employees and 55,000 tobacco farmers, and their estimated 350,000 family members and dependents, rely on Mighty Corp. for their livelihood.

“We call on the Bureau of Internal Revenue [BIR] to act more responsibly in making statements regarding the case of [Mighty Corp.] and take into consideration repercussions of a cancelation of the license to operate of the company,” Barrientos, also the spokesman for the company, added.

“The BIR should consider that this case impacts Mighty’s employees, tobacco farmers and their families, as well as suppliers and distributors who depend on the company,” he said.


Barrientos called on the government to ensure due process for the tobacco firm as it faces charges of tax evasion.

“We reiterate our pledge to fully cooperate with the government. But while we welcome the filing of these charges as an opportunity to clear the name of the company and its officers, we hope that the BIR will also show prudence in the conduct of its probe of the firm,” he said.

Earlier, Mario Cabasal, president of the National Federation of Tobacco Farmers Associations and
Cooperatives, said tobacco farmers supposedly will bear the brunt if Mighty Corp.’s operation is shut down.

“Most of us depend on Mighty for the purchase of our tobacco. They are our biggest buyer of local tobacco. If the government makes good its threat to close down Mighty Corp., tobacco farmers will bear the brunt of the closure,” Cabasal noted.

He said Mighty Corp. is a regular buyer of Virginia and native tobacco.

Considering that the company produces predominantly low-priced brands, according to Cabasal, the cigarette firm is the biggest buyer of local tobacco.

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3 Comments

  1. Retired Regional Trial Court judge Oscar Barrientos, executive vice president of the embattled firm, over the weekend said about 7,000 employees and 55,000 tobacco farmers, and their estimated 350,000 family members and dependents, rely on Mighty Corp. for their livelihood.
    ———————————————————
    If Mighty Corp were really concerned about those families they would not have put those families in a position that they could all lose their jobs by using fake tax stamps to defraud the government of the taxes they owed.

    If Mighty Corp get closed down then the ones to blame are the greedy owners and executives who came up with this tax stamp fraud plan and benefited from it.

    Were the bigger bonuses worth it ?

    The reason these companies come up with these schemes is they don’t think they will go to jail.
    At most they will pay a fine.
    It’s time for the government to send a message to these greedy and corrupt owners and executives and prove to them that they will be arrested and jailed.

  2. christine tan on

    Such an argument from a retired judge is very similar to the reasons given by drug pushers and holduppers and the likes when arrested by the authorities, i.e., they have no job or other source of income to feed their family, to support a sick family member, etc., the reason why they are into drug pushing, robbing, carnapping, kidnapping. It seems therefore that he places the owners of the mighty corp. in the same league as the drug pushers, kidnappers, carnappers, robbers, etc.

  3. Mr. Executive… So you will let the 100 Million taxpaying people suffer from your Tax evading scheme just because your company didn’t do it’s fair share in the duty of paying your taxes, in which you enrich yourself.

    These employees you are talking about are better off working for another company who doesn’t enslave them. Stupid claim from a supposedly professional person.