MANILA President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday said he would like to see all smuggled luxury vehicles destroyed as he led another condemnation of 116 motorcycles and six vehicles worth PHP34.71 million.
I don't want to see any vehicle in any warehouse or any Customs area. I want all these destroyed so that there will be no more smuggled vehicles, Duterte said.
Duterte described the Bureau of Customs (BOC) and the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) as historically the purgatory of government service due to graft and corruption.
You know historically the purgatory of the Philippines and the people look at these two agencies with disdain and even they are cynical and I had to look for the best men to run these two organizations: the BOC and the BIR, he said.
Under BOC Commissioner Isidro Lapena and BIR Commissioner Caesar Dulay, Duterte said the two bureaus are doing a great job both in fighting corruption and improving revenue collection.
In his report to the President, Lapena said the BOC has surpassed its collection target from January to May this year and promised to implement more reforms and changes.
You can expect more positive changes and reform in the BOC in the coming days, Lapena said after he accompanied Duterte in witnessing the second condemnation of luxury vehicles at the BOC compound in Port Area.
Last February, Duterte also witnessed the destruction of 20 high-end vehicles worth PHP61 million.
Duterte said he put Lapena, former Davao City police director, because the BOC chief always prefers honor and service to the country.
During his speech, Duterte had also announced the firing of BOC Deputy Commissioner Noel Patrick Prudente over excessive travels.
Duterte warned corrupt BOC officials and employees to stop their illegal activities.
We are all being monitored because this Customs I said it's always been considered the purgatory of government service, the President said.
I'm sure Sid (Lapena) has been with the military for so long a time. He knows how to assess and evaluate the situation, he added.
Lapena said the BOC has seized another 24 luxury vehicles including several supercars that are now under litigation.
Duterte also renewed his call to everyone not to talk to any members of his family about the government transactions and projects.
If it is request coming from my son, daughter, relatives, consider it denied, he said.
He assured he would never allow corrupt officials at least during my time.
Duterte said he hates to fire officials particularly those who helped him during the 2016 national elections but promised the Filipino people to give them at least a respite of the massive corruption everyday.
Give the nation a respite just until I finish my term. It's up to you on what to do in the next generation, Duterte said. (PNA)
Source: Philippine News Agency