Despite change in leadership, DOF chief sees sustained reforms at BOC
Despite a change in leadership at the Bureau of Customs, Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III on Monday said the reform agenda at the allegedly graft-ridden Department of Finance-attached revenue agency will continues.
“There is a personal change, but there is no change in management thrust in the agency,” Dominguez said when sought for comment on President Duterte’s acceptance of former Customs chief Nicanor E. Faeldon.
“First of all, let me say I have no doubt of Commissioner Faeldon’s integrity. Secondly, I am very confident in the new appointee, who is Sid Lapeña. He is a very honest, thorough and very straight guy,” Dominguez said, referring to Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Director Isidro Lapeña.
“So I expect that the improvements will continue and that we will move forward with the current thrust of the agency,” Dominguez added.
The Finance chief noted of the BOC’s and Faeldon’s roles in catching alleged tax evader Mighty Corp., which they caught using fake cigarette tax stamps.
“I think the agency is shaping up and I think they are fully aware that this big job is in front of them. Let me just point out that our success in the collection of some P30 billion from Mighty was initiated by the BOC. Their law, the Customs law, they used to the fullest to be able to raid warehouses, and the Bureau of Internal Revenue came and verified that these stamps were in fact, fake,” Dominguez said.
Referring to Faeldon, Dominguez said: “He conducted four raids. So I have no doubt about his honesty and sincerity, because you know, what is for whoever there to bribe him, let’s say ‘here’s 500 million bucks, just tell Dominguez that you raided the warehouse and everything was OK.’ Or they could have set it up—put all these good stuff in these warehouses with the stamps so you raid that one. They could have done it. And yet in four different locations, he conducted raids.”
“So I think the BOC is well on its way to showing that they can meet up with their responsibilities,” according to Dominguez. JE
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