Duterte fires BOC official for excessive travels

MANILA President Rodrigo R. Duterte on Wednesday fired Bureau of Customs (BOC) deputy commissioner Noel Patrick Sales Prudente for excessive foreign travels.

He is now under investigation by the House. The investigation will take time and it is just a recommendation. So I will cut short the agony of Congress. I am firing him effective today, Duterte said in his speech during the condemnation of smuggled luxury motor vehicles and scooters at the BOC compound in Port Area in Manila.

Duterte, reading from a report handed to him, said Prudente has personal travels to Singapore and Europe.

He warned the BOC officials and employees not to engage in illegal activities because all these will not be kept secret forever.

It's just in your mind that your movement will not be revealed. You are all being monitored because this Customs has been considered the purgatory of government service, he said.

I'm warning everybody here. Maybe you think it's just a drama. I will really go after you, he added.

Duterte said his government adheres to merit system wherein honest and hardworking public servants will get commendation and even promotion they deserved.

In his own speech, BOC Commissioner Isidro Lapena vowed to continue the reforms and changes that Duterte wanted to implement in the bureau.

You can expect more positive changes and reforms in the BOC in the coming days, Lapena said after he joined the President in witnessing the destruction of the 122 smuggled luxury vehicles.

Although, he admitted that he was the one who recommended Prudente to Duterte since he has knowledge on Information Technology (IT).

I met him during the campaign sorties of the president in Tagaytay then when he (Duterte) won. We saw each other again and while we were talking, he seems to be knowledgeable in IT. That's how it came about. During that time I was scouting. That is why I recommended him, LapeAa added.

Lapena, meanwhile, also reported that the BOC has surpassed its target collection from January to May this year.

In response, Duterte commended Lapena, a former police director of Davao City, for maintaining his core values by always upholding honor and service to the country. (With Ferdinand Patinio/PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency