Customs’ abolition just plain talk

Palace says to zap BOC only Biazon’s proposal

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The abolition of the Bureau of Customs is just a “suggestion” from Commissioner Rozzano Rufino Biazon and only a part of his “initial discussions” with President Benigno Aquino III, Malacañang said on Saturday.

Abolishing the bureau is just one of the possibilities being considered in the search for ways to improve customs service, Strategic Communications Secretary Ricky Carandang and deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said.

“It’s just one of many ideas being discussed to improve collections. The fact that it’s being discussed at all shows you how serious we are taking the need to improve collections, not necessarily the idea of abolition,” Carandang said in a text message to the Inquirer.

“From what I understand from Commissioner Biazon, that was one of his suggestions. But allow us to say that these discussions were initial, and [abolishing the bureau is] just one of the many possibilities that are being discussed to improve customs performance,” Valte said.

In a roundtable discussion with Inquirer editors and reporters on Thursday night, Biazon said he had discussed with President Aquino the abolition of the customs bureau and replacing it with a professional institution run by completely new officers and employees who would be paid high to shield them from temptations.

He said any less stringent measure may not suffice to stamp out corruption in the customs bureau, as corruption was so deeply entrenched in the culture and system at the agency.

In such an environment, a simple reorganization will not work. Only a top-down cleansing can end corruption in the agency once and for all, he said.

Biazon got the idea from his observation of good practices in other countries that have successfully cleaned up their customs services.

Peru example

“One concept done by other countries is a complete overhaul [of their customs departments] through abolition. We might have to do that,” Biazon said.

He cited the example of Peru, which, to defeat corruption and smuggling, abolished its customs department, established a new one, adopted strict qualifications for hiring, and gave the new staff higher salaries so they would ignore overtures to break the rules in exchange for money.

Independent senatorial candidate Teodoro Casiño found Biazon’s idea a “foolish, knee-jerk response” to corruption and smuggling that reportedly continues despite the Aquino administration’s emphasis on transparency and good government.

“It’s like saying we should abolish and privatize Congress or Malacañang for failing to stop corruption. In the first place, the smugglers are all from the private sector so it is like asking vampires to run the blood bank,” Casiño said in a statement.

Casiño, a Bayan Muna party-list representative who has served three terms in the House, said the correct response was “to hold customs officials, including their protectors in Congress and in the executive, accountable for the crime of smuggling.”

“Most of the time, customs is put in a tight spot because the smugglers [have protectors] in [the House], the Senate and the Palace. If the protectors are not held accountable, any revamp in customs will be for naught,” Casiño said.

He said President Aquino should be the one to make the “political decision” to stop smuggling, and he must make it even if it meant tangling with his friends in politics and in business. The President should also appoint a “no-nonsense official” to do the job, Casiño, who earlier urged Mr. Aquino to fire Biazon for failing to stop smuggling, added.

“Customs Commissioner Biazon’s resignation or the abolition of the agency would not be enough to curb smuggling because the protectors of smuggling remain [untouched],” he said.

“The proposal is a nonsolution and merely diverts attention from the real problem, [which is] smuggling,” he added.

No pockets, drawers

Reelectionist Sen. Francis Escudero suggested that instead of immediately abolishing the customs bureau, the government should first try changes that may not only rehabilitate the agency but also change the culture of its officials and employees.

Escudero said in jest that customs officials should have uniforms without pockets to discourage on-site bribery, and clear-glass-topped desks without drawers to prevent heftier enveloped payouts from changing hands in the offices.

“And if they will not do it, I will file a bill [that would require security] cameras in all government offices and make it a crime to erase the recordings of these cameras,” Escudero said.

Escudero, head of the Senate committee on justice, said the Philippine National Police had an image makeover after it shed off its khakis and brown ties for the present blue-with-red-trim uniforms.

In another example, Escudero suggested the customs bureau adopt a strict queuing system for incoming goods so that those that came in first would be processed before those that came in last.

Such a system should include sanctions for customs officials who would not process shipments in order of arrival, Escudero said.

Long process

“I don’t have any problem with [abolishing the customs bureau], but that will be a long process. A law has to be passed before [the bureau] can be abolished,” he said, adding that impending abolition could trigger a bureaucratic upheaval in the customs bureau that would surely lead to collection problems.

Besides, abolishing the customs bureau would mean that everyone there is corrupt and should be prosecuted, he said.

“If the assumption is that everyone there is corrupt, then why not file cases against them whether or not we create a new agency?” he said.

Speaking on state-run radio, Valte said privatizing the customs service was just a proposal and that Biazon’s talking about it did not mean it would be implemented.

Valte disagreed with a reporter’s phoned-in question about Biazon’s proposal being an admission that the customs bureau was a “hopeless case.”

She reiterated that privatization is not the only proposal that the government is studying to improve revenue collection at the customs bureau.

“We are looking at a lot of other options,” Valte said.

Biazon said claims of rampant smuggling, especially of oil through special economic zones and agricultural products, and calls for his resignation or dismissal were part of a “demolition job” aimed at removing him from the customs bureau.

Asked if Biazon was on his way out, Valte said the customs chief still enjoyed the President’s confidence. With reports from DJ Yap and Norman Bordadora

First posted 12:31 am | Sunday, April 14th, 2013

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  • speaksoftlylove

    In short, tsismis lang pala. Paepal dahil mageeleksyon.

    Dating gawi din ang kalalabasan. Masaya sila habang naghihinagpis si Juan.

  • tra6Gpeche

    “Just one of so many ideas.” Really? How many ideas do the Aquino Administration have? It sounds big but in reality very hollow. Just concentrate in abolishing the whole BOC. Anything less than that will accomplish nothing. Otherwise, import non-Filipinos to manage the BOC and only accept non-Filipinos to work for the said bureau from janitor to the highest position. What do we do with the replaced Filipino officials and workers? Export them to civilized and less corrupt countries. We will find out that these Filipinos will behave, be disciplined, be law abiding, be honest and will find back their lost principle. The proof is the Filipinos in Canada, US, Australia, Singapore, countries in Europe and anywhere but the Philippines.

    • tadasolo

      I am clearly and terribly disappointed with the response coming from Malacanang. This is a big let down and their double talk is not acceptable. This bold idea to dismantle and so to speak to ” burn” the house is so revolutionary and is what the doctor ordered to finally “cure” that terminally ill patient the BOC. We need to replicate what other countries are doing by automating the process and elimnating the workers who corrupt the system. We need to put pressure on this administration and let them know of our disaspointment.

      • koolkid_inthehouse

        You have to burn it to prevent contamination. Prevent the spread of parasites in BOC is to completely incinerate everything inside. No antibiotics can cleanse the corruptions in BOC.

  • joerizal

    Kapag ang bahay ay puno ng anay, dapat nang tibagin at magtayo ng bago.

  • http://www.facebook.com/don.anagaran Don Anagaran

    May I require a listing of those “just one of so many ideas”?

    • speaksoftlylove

      Valte and Carandang have lots of it. It’s the doo doo inside their behinds.

      Escudero has one “brilliant suggestion” that is, requiring BOC people to wear poketless clothes, as if the bribes fits the pockets. What a moron. His other suggestion is to charge them all. Parang gayahin ang BIR. that is, 160 charges, no convictions. Splendid accomplishments from the two main generating revenue offices. At nungka, tumaas daw ang rating ng Pinas sabi ng Fitch, pati Fitch hilo.

  • Commentator

    lol at escudero!

    he thinks that “lagay” in boc is only a few bills. they dont need pockets and tables! the amount of money corrupt boc employees get cannot fit in a pocket or even in a table drawer! we are.talking about millions!

    cameras inside boc? heard of funds transfer thru.banks mr senator?

    what an idiot.

    • Cicero Sid

      no corrupt employee will accept fund transfer thru banks because there is paper trail (evidence).

      LOL…nagsalita ang di idiot. Yun pala, mas idiot. BWAHAHAHA!!!!

      • Commentator

        hahahahaha!
        u can open an account using a fictitious name! hahahahaha.

        moron.

      • Nelson Baguya II

        wahaha, m western union mo, padala mo sa lola or kapatid or paid kaibigan para i receive yung pera..haha as simple as that.

    • amapangarap

      .

    • Ganymede

      That’s right! Even the congressmen don’t need to have cabinets and pockets to collect their “commissions” from their pet contractors. A bank account is all that is needed.

  • http://enria.org/ scconcern

    Biazon idea has sense on it, if the system is 100% functionally corrupt or hopeless to change. I am for abolition, too.
    This is like the company I work, a project failed and the company loss 100 millions$. the whole force was abolished. The good and only minor players were rehire after 6months. Best for BOC no rehiring.
    There are lots of sabungero in BOC…Biazon is doing “CULLING” of bad breed, if it didn’t give 75% win, destroy the whole line.

    • mamer2

      Abolish Custom…?
      Then…WHAT..?.?.?
      “Labas-Pasok with Gusto”…, ‘yon ba ang gusto nyo…?

      • Kapitanbagwis

        Use your common sense, what you just said is happening right now in BOC

      • mamer2

        But NOT with GUSTO.!
        Where does that leave “YOUR COMMON SENSE”.?

      • Kapitanbagwis

        Not with gusto? Nonsense and pathetic

        KapitanBagwis Sent from my iPhone

      • mamer2

        Stupid, nincompoop assh_le..!

      • Kapitanbagwis

        Hehehe you just described yourself Pitiful moron

        KapitanBagwis Sent from my iPhone

      • mamer2

        Following your way of thinking…,
        if several policemen are proven to be corrupt…, it would be best to abolish the police force.
        Your suggestion/thinking just stinks to the heavens.

      • mamer2

        If Custom is abolished…,
        what will replace it..?
        Another Custom…? With another set of “crooks”…?

        It is NOT “Customs” that is at fault.
        It is the people running it.
        Do not abolish Customs.
        “Fire out” or “Prosecute” the people who were running it, “wrongfully”.

      • Kapitanbagwis

        What a negative thinker you are. To you all people are corrupt tsk tsk tsk Pathetic
        KapitanBagwis Sent from my iPhone

      • mamer2

        And you are a positive mover of corruption and a manipulator and user.
        Still an assho_e, in my book.

      • Kapitanbagwis

        Sa reply mo wala ka talagang common sense PWE

        KapitanBagwis Sent from my iPhone

      • Kapitanbagwis

        Your reply is wallowing in stupidity PWE

        KapitanBagwis Sent from my iPhone

      • mamer2

        You have just described your character and pathetic person.
        You started the name calling because you lack a little softness between your ears. It’s all dry and hard and it smells.
        Most probably in cahoots with the “mafioso” in customs.

      • Kapitanbagwis

        Nakita ko na kung gaano ka ka ungas at ang kasabihang ang pumatol sa ungas ay mas ungas kaya di na kita papatulan . Ubos na panahon ko para sa iyo.
        KapitanBagwis Sent from my iPhone

      • mamer2

        Eh, paano. Walang ka naman na e-dagdag nga matino.
        Puro “name calling” at critisismo ang alam mo.
        Ang na una sumabing “ungas”…, eh “ungas din lang, sa kanyang utak”.
        Ba-ba-boooooo,.

      • Kapitanbagwis

        What a negative thinker you are! To you all people are corrupt, maybe including yourself?
        KapitanBagwis Sent from my iPhone

      • mamer2

        And you are nothing but an ass-“O”..!
        Not only “that”…, but a nincompoop as well.
        Never did I indicate in my comment(s) that “all people are corrupt”.
        I said was to fire out & prosecute the wrong-doers…, which may have included you, assh_ _e..!

      • Kapitanbagwis

        One thing you are good, calling names and that speak volumes of your character and personality Pathetic
        KapitanBagwis Sent from my iPhone

      • Kapitanbagwis

        People with shallow mind and can’t support their argument resort resort to gutter tactics like name calling
        KapitanBagwis Sent from my iPhone

      • mamer2

        WHo started the name calling..?
        You feeble-minded nincompoop.
        Who started throwing names like “negative thinker” and “corrupt”.
        Who else but this poor excuse of an ass-ho_e.

      • http://enria.org/ scconcern

        Read the lines carefully…if custom needs to abolish, so be it. It is easy to rename BOC for the sake of new system that is less/non corruptible system.
        Firing out and prosecute corrupt personel is tideous, expensive and time consuming, especially with the existing elitist/plutocratic judicial system.

      • mamer2

        The main reason corruption thrives in many of our government agencies is that…, persecution, penalties and imprisonment are seldom made against the culprits.
        Abolishing and creating a new one, even with a new name, won’t change the outcome.

      • http://enria.org/ scconcern

        You are contented to leave corruption to exist as- is. It is better to keep the changes flowing.
        If you can’t bit/change them, try and try till you succeed.

    • superpilipinas

      in the company you worked for, did the head of the company suggest to abolish the company itself?

      he-he-he. you’re context and analogy is wrong.

      • Cicero Sid

        still wrong analogy to compare a company with BOC…coz I still have to hear a company as corrupt as BOC. BWAHAHAHA!!!!

      • http://enria.org/ scconcern

        It is not the analogy that counts, it is the idea/context of culling, abolition, revamp, etc, to find solution. What do you have in mind, to fix the dysfunctional and corrupt system.
        Your comment is incomplete….

      • superpilipinas

        Ok. You got a point.

        Here is what I have in mind. Find the relevant and direct cause of the problem. Then use solution to eliminate the cause.

        So what is the direct cause?

        Biazon was a political appointee. He does not have the competence to lead and reform BoC. He might be a good man for other positions but definitely not good for BoC.

        My suggested solution?

        Look for my comment on how to replace Biazon, use SGS Philippines to help BoC, effectively use Gen. Lim and NBI to minimize if not eliminate smuggling and corruption.

  • http://www.yellowmythbusters.gov.ph/ Weder-Weder Lang

    When a med-tech grad like Ruffy Biazon talks about grand plans involving a lot of math, finance, economics and logistics, you can be sure he’s way out of his depth. That’s what happened when he floated the idea of privatizing the customs bureau altogether. The blind fanatics of PNoy have been taken for another ride.

    • superpilipinas

      Aquino should have appointed Biazon to help DOH control Dengue.

      DOH had admitted last year losing the fight against Dengue.

      Biazon failed to stop smuggling but he might be able to succeed in minimizing Dengue deaths and sickness.

    • NAGMAMARUNONG

      we have done almost everytime replacing customs leadership. may i ask for your honest opinion what qualifications other than mentioned should the leader possess? thank you.

      • Cicero Sid

        Following are very qualified:

        Industrial engineer
        Systems Engineer
        Methods Engineer
        Management Engineer
        Auditor

      • buttones

        Yes it’s a good list, if this were a private company who did not care about the applicants political leanings, who they knew, gender, what family they came from but just wanted RESULTS these are the disciplines one would advertise for. But government is essentially 100% political, incestuous, and in fact only answers to it’s shareholders every three/ six years. So it’s not quite the same. I like the USA idea of two four terms, keeps the President on his toes six years to make a mess of the whole thing is too long. Can’t be changed of course….

        [So no zoologists and medical men on your list? LOL!]

      • http://www.yellowmythbusters.gov.ph/ Weder-Weder Lang

        please clarify: what mentioned qualifications are you referring to?

        Please also bear in mind that without skills and competency, leadership alone will not suffice.

        if you did have a chance to read my post yesterday on the very same topic, my suggestion is get the gold-standard ==> Singapore’s PSA International.

      • NAGMAMARUNONG

        ok will try to. thanks. ditto to cicero sid- i guess engineers would be a better option and not lawyers.

    • TGM _ERICK

      His education pala does not fit hs job. a square peg in a round hole. And who put him in the job but a square peg, too!

      • http://www.yellowmythbusters.gov.ph/ Weder-Weder Lang

        Basta KKK pasok.

  • leomar101

    Hi miss valtec, if this is just purely plain talk, then what does really mongol doing about this perenial problem? with hundreds of billions being lost to these smugglers why mongol aquino does not seems to care about it? How do I know na hindi siya kumikilos sa malaking problema na ito? Una: Naubos ang panahon niya sa pangagampanya. yon ang pinagkaabalahan niya ngayon. Pangalawa nagpahayag siya ng malabong statement na nagsasabi na pinag-aralan pa ang problema ng customs. yon pala yon lang ang nangyari for few weeks na na i abolish ang customs without any further studies or explanation. ng mabuking sila, sinabi na kay biazon yong idea na yon. Meaning hanggang ngayon walang matinong plano at pag-uusap ang mga hinayupak na mga inutil na yan. Sabagay ano ba ang kayang isipin ng isang mongol? Noong hindi pa presidente ang uhugin na yan kay bilis magsabi na madaling paktakpan ang mga butas ng kurapsyon nayan. Ngayon na presidente na siya at 3 taon na ang nakaraan hindi napansin ang problema ng customs hanggang ngayon. It’s either na nakinabang din siya at may share siya mula sa mga smugglers na yan since lacierda said na alam nila kung sino ang mga smugglers. hahaha. Sige mongol atupagin mo lang ang paglalakbay at pangampanya dahil wala ka ng maisip torpe ka. Dapat nandiyan ka sa malacanang nagtrabaho hindi yon papasyal pasyal ka lang araw-araw.

  • mamer2

    “If you can’t stand the HEAT…, Get-Out of the Kitchen.!”

  • tekateka

    I know someone in customs who’s just an ordinary employee but has 3 houses, several cars and bragging about playing tong-its during work hours… just sharing..

    • superpilipinas

      not surprising at all. i had a relative who got so rich but was just a clerk there. but karma got him and sadly…his family too.

    • DonQuixoteDeRizal

      Give the name to Sandiganbayan and BIR and let them investigate where the money is coming from.

  • B3ntong

    Puro bunganga lang!!! Tulad ng namumuno…..Pag puro bunganga nakakalbo!

  • superpilipinas

    He-he-he. It’s already predictable what will happen in the next few days, weeks, and months.

    PNoy and Biazon will suddenly release news one after another about little accomplishments to repair the damaged publicity.

    Then of course the smugglers will lie low and Aquino and Biazon will falsely claim that they have succeeded while actually they had done nothing.

  • superpilipinas

    Here are effective solutions:

    Plan for Biazon’s one last accomplishment opportunity to have a graceful exit. Have him work with SGS Philippines (branch of worldwide SGS firm known for its solid integrity) to re-engineer BoC management and processes. The new management process itself will demand transparency and effectiveness and in effect will take care of weeding out corrupt and incompetent officials. Aquino and DoF should provide full support to SGS and remove any political obstruction. Give Biazon a strict timetable of not more than 2 years.

    While Biazon is working with SGS and his other responsibilities, bring up General Lim and give him only 2 years to go after smugglers. Implement enforcement programs being done in Hongkong and Singapore. Review his accomplishments every six months and replace him if he does not perform. If he proves to perform with integrity, he could very well be appointed as the next chief.

    Get DoJ and NBI to setup a composite team to do covert operations to bust smugglers. Let them pose as either sources of contraband or buyers. Just like what the ATF Bureau of US DoJ do.

  • Good_Governance

    Throwing cold water on Biazon’s customs reform proposal which draws on international best practice is a sure way of discouraging bold innovations in governance in our country. Tinkering at the margin, which is what critics of the Biazon proposal
    are in effect suggesting, would simply perpetuate the status quo. The deeply entrenched, pervasive and longstanding institutional rot in our customs administration (as well as in other areas) demands no less than a “cultural revolution” of sorts. The nature of the desired reform also requires a “big bang” approach, rather than a gradual approach favored by Senator Escudero and others. A gradual approach would allow reform opponents to regroup and consolidate their forces, thus derailing and ultimately killing reform.

    Support for Biazon’s proposal provides a key test of the commitment of PNoy’s administration to the straight path. Rather than downplaying the Biazon proposal as simply one of the options on the table, Pnoy and his advisers should use it as a pilot case to demonstrate how genuine structural reform (as opposed to just changing some key actors like the ex-Chief Justice Corona) can be done to improve governance.

    • water_gate64

      Your are entirely correct; the so
      called gradual implementation of change is intended to perpetuate the
      status quo, in the process protecting trapos filth and other powerful
      elite that are directly benefiting from the largesse of smuggling.
      Notwithstanding all of his straight path dogma and seemingly high
      brow posturing, Aquino is in effect a hollow man who lacks the
      courage, personal integrity and potentially intellectual capacity, to
      push through with reforms capable of reinventing this country, and he
      prefers instead to proselytize about the great nation that exists
      only as part of his rhetoric.

  • buttones

    One has to wonder how this Rufino Biazon ever got the job of Commissioner in the first place; he has zero experience in anything, no management, no business, nothing. And I can’t see how zoology and medicine fit into the scheme; he seems not to have finished those pursuits either. Let us call a spade a spade, he got the job because of his name and he knows nothing other than politics.

    I would have thought that BOC, one of the most corrupt government
    organisations we have, would need a leader with a backbone, experience in
    dealing with problems, and have had a plan figured out by now that wasn’t one
    of running away from the problem. And a bit of charisma, and a bit of confidence
    to say to the President “This is the way I’m going to clear up this crap Mr P,
    do you agree because if not I’m clearing out my desk Mr P.”

    The guy is clueless.. is he KKK?

    • water_gate64

      Before coming to office Aquino ‘vowed’ to employ only the ‘brighest and best’ in serving the needs of the nation. In yet another overt example of his lack of courage and personal integrity, Aquino then proceeded to appoint a stream of political toadies to key government posts; people who are at best fundamentally incompetent and at worst corrupt into the bargain. Unfortunately the losers in this farce are as always the Filipino people.

      • buttones

        Yes I remember that, If indeed this is an example of the ‘brightest and the best’ of Aquino’s friends, class mates, shooting buddies or whatever then all is lost, and better for us all just to ignore the whole thing, the whole idea of becoming a progressive nation and look after number one.

        Yes the Filipino people are the losers in this endless game of ‘Family Feuds’, always were, sixty seven long years of abject and utter failure, swinging from one half baked, corrupt family administration to the next. Maybe we were too young for democracy all those years ago…

    • Ganymede

      You don’t get it, the BOC is hopeless. The corruption is in the SYSTEM already. No matter who your replace as Commissioner, if the people down the line won’t heed your order you can’t do any reform. And that’s what Biazon discovered, so burning the house from top to bottom is the way. Compared to your opinion, I think Biazon’s has more credibility because he experienced first hand what it is like in the BOC.

  • el_latigo

    Plain talk, but makes a lot of sense. Abolish this perennially notorious corrupt institution that is, if PNoy is really serious in eradicating, if not minimizing corruption. Quo vadis Daang matuwid? Ordinary people like me are beginning to see and realize more and more that this street that he is bragging about since he took office in Malacanang is the way to the road of perdition.

  • OleSapra aka ARGUS

    STOP SMUGGLING? SUBMERGE THE WHOLE HOUSE!

    ANA: “Naubusan ng pagkain si Magellan at kanyang mga soldados habang nasa gitna sila ng laot. Pinaghuhuli nila ang mga daga sa barko para pagkain at pang-tawid gutom nila, ‘di ba?

    LISA: “Korek ka r’yan ‘ga, ang gleng-gleng mo sa history. Pero kung ihahambing sa kaso ng Customs eh ‘di na rin mabilang ang mga empleadong nahuling ala-daga at napatalsik sa kanilang posisyon. Gayunman, corrupt pa rin ang Customs at lumala pa kesa dati.”

    CION: “Pero nalipol lahat ‘yung mga pesteng daga no’ng lumubog sa dagat ang barko ng mga soldados ni Magellan. So, para mawala ang mga peste sa Customs, ILUBOG-SA-LAOT (read: abolish) ang buong bahay, at presto, patay kang bata ka!!!”

  • kevv33

    Palliative solutions to improve collections in the BOC will not work, same people running the bureau can never be reformed. Its like cancer it can never be cured if not a drastic measure like Biazon’s proposal can be implemented.

  • Loggnat

    Privatization of specific section in BOC could work. Private companies will have complete control of the section Customs that they will run. One example is the international airport incoming tax collection of merchandize and passengers can be privatized. To make the private company honest, regularly scheduled audit and no notice performance evaluation will gauge the effectiveness of the company. If the private company cannot deliver or achieve milestone and goals within a specific time-frame, out the they go and another private company can have a go at it. Data automation and/or computerization of business transactions is an absolute necessity because it will minimize person to person contact between importers and tax collectors. An incoming shipment should have all the necessary documents including taxes paid certification. The only thing that customs personnel needs to do is to ensure invoice documents matches what is in the shipping containers. And if those containers are properly inspected and sealed from its port of origin, all the customs personnel needs to do is make sure the seal was not tampered with during shipment. Bureau of Customs might be just be too big and maybe it should be broken down into manageable sections. Some of the sections might be improved with privatization and the customs officials job will be overseeing and evaluating the private company. While other sections could be totally controlled by customs personnel ie. smuggling investigation and follow up and then coordinating with other law enforcement offices with customs officers will be the lead. It’s the system that makes it easy for personnel to be corrupted and the cure will be to completely breakdown the old system and build anew one that will make it harder to be corrupted. Prosecuting those caught breaking the law and penalizing them to the max will also deter other personnel to follow suit. Is the current head capable enough to do do the job? I don’t know, if he is helpless to go against the employee union who is against data automation and computerization….. what do you think?

  • speedstream2

    Barely a day has just passed from the time it was first broached that nothing less than a new start for the Customs bureau would be needed to cleanse itself, and just when people are starting to warm up to the idea, when it all but gets shot down by people in the inner sanctum. What gives? No wonder the corrupt bureaucrats and their partners in crime are laughing their heads off on the way to the bank. After all, it’s going to be business as usual. it appears that the law-abiding taxpayers are not going to catch a good break anytime soon.

  • Pareko

    It doesn,t matter who heads the BOC, the fact is people who have been working at the BOC has been corrupted for a long time that they think that corruption is a way of living. So, one solution is to get rid of these employees by asking all of them to submit their resignation papers, then weed out the bad ones then retain the good IF THERE ARE ANY LIFT, only then we can fix the problem. If corrupted fire them no if and or buts about it. This goes to all government employee, the none productive should be weed out of the service. Will you hire people in your company that are nonproductive???

  • tagasugod

    Why not tap the services of SGS? It would help.

    • Kapitanbagwis

      SGS is corrupt, they made so much money for Dacer and Peping Cojuanco during their stint with the BOC

  • elgeepee

    napahina naman ng ulo mo Mr. senator, ano kaba di mo ba alam sa labas magbayaran yan. Ang iniisip mo kasi yung barya lang.Ciguro magresign kana lang.

  • carlcid

    Biazon keeps harping on a demolition job when, actually, his own incompetence and, possibly, corruption, were what did him in. Biazon is so desperate that he points fingers at everyone else but himself. And would even go the nihilistic suicide bomber route by seeking to have the Bureau of Customs abolished, thereby dragging the whole institution down with him. If Biazon goes down, he wants the whole Bureau to go down with him.

    • nuke24

      you work in customs?..

      • carlcid

        The BOC has been there for decades. Obliterating an institution only because the head of that institution is inept or corrupt doesn’t answer the questions about poor or corrupt leadership. It is barking up the wrong tree. And, most likely, a mischievous way of deflecting attention from the real culprit – the head of the BOC.

    • http://enria.org/ scconcern

      SO BE IT, as long there is change for good…. The workers will destroy any good idea to improved, just to continue the old ways. I have relative who work in BOC, he himself agree (even against his conscience) to get cuts(grease money), to survive on his job and to support the FRIDAY PAYOLA (giving part of cut to janitors, messenger and other party without cuts).
      BOC and BIR are notorious in corruption.

  • jeetkaido

    “Escudero said in jest that customs officials should have uniforms without pockets to discourage on-site bribery, and clear-glass-topped desks without drawers to prevent heftier enveloped payouts from changing hands in the offices.” Magandang idea to sa mga small time corrupt officials at applicable din sa BIR, LTO, Traffic police,MMDA & sa pagkuha ng police clearance. At dapat bawal din mag-shake hands & appear (paraan sa pag-abot ng lagay). Dapat sabitan lang ng ball pen ang mga damit nito.
    “Escudero suggested the customs bureau adopt a strict queuing system for incoming goods so that those that came in first would be processed before those that came in last.”
    Ayos din to, madalas yong huli ang nauuna dahil bigtime ang lagayan dito. Di pa dumadating ang shipment, nalagyan na si Boss at na-arrange na ang daanan. Mahirap i-solve to, siguradong may involved na senatong, tongressman at mga general problems dito di kaya ng powers ni Biazon, mahina ang support from admin.

  • Rosendo So

    For now customs still here, We want Smuggling to stop , you said you went to Peru to show how we stop smuggling, now you are saying, We should follow Peru , P32B of smuggle Agricutural product that have enter the country 2012 along, this is our problem.

  • Winniejoy Lumayag

    Petron blames Biazon. Biazon blames his agency and wants it abolished. What a goofball. Paltan na yan and never appoint him to any government agency anymore he might again recommend any agency that he’ll be appointed to be abolished.

  • Kapitanbagwis

    Abolition of one of the most corrupt collection agency of the ogvernment, the BOC is a very good suggestion and must be considered very seriously or the most entrenched corrucpt personnels of the bureau can never be uprooted owing to their political bosses.

  • ingbilat

    ha ha this is becoming so hilarious what a good joke! but of course the only person who can put an end to the thievery in the BOC is a person who’s got balls! literally and otherwise, derisive laughter!

  • water_gate64

    It hardly comes as a surprise that the
    government of a country that is internationally renowned for
    indolence, ignorance and incompetence, would reject a progressive
    idea capable of delivering overwhelming financial and social benefit
    to the Philippines as a nation. Since coming to power Aquino has made
    a lot of noise about facilitating long term change, making vows and
    otherwise grandstanding for attention. Unfortunately the reality is
    light years away from the administrations posturing; with abject
    poverty, soaring rates of vicious crime, wholesale smuggling, human
    rights abuses, drug trafficking and endemic corruption continuing unabated, to the
    egregious detriment of the long suffering Filipino people. There can
    only be one reason why Aquino lacks both the courage and personal
    integrity required to clean up the festering sore at the BOC; he has
    been given his marching orders by the filth masquerading as
    politicians and other power brokers in this country to leave well
    enough alone, as they continue with their snouts firmly entrenched in
    the trough of ill-gotten gains, amassing billions in personal
    fortunes whilst the country spirals inexorably into oblivion.

  • TEAM PNOY

    ano na ba ang nagyayari kay General Danilo Lim, bakit walang output as intel chief ng BOC?

  • nuke24

    Tama abolish na yan or palitan lahat ng employees.. Need total cleansing in BOC. Kaya lng mga politicians ang smugglers. GUDLUCK!

  • Akoaykanoy

    Privatize custom now

  • Rolly257

    i-prosecute daw ang mga tao sa Customs, sabi ni Escudero. We then have to allocate 100 years for this procedure in order to find a single person guilty.

  • Chloroform

    I really have no idea on the SOPs in the BOC. My unsolicited recommendation would be to re-assign employees to different locations regularly (like the COA) and to create trusted teams for random on-the-spot check/audit/observers of the daily activities of the BOC and lastly, modernization of BOC…(you may have to provide additional living allowance for relocation)

  • kalikasanipagtanggol

    Just abolish and stop talking!

  • legislex

    Escudero is telling the world that he is “clean”. Contrary to said pretension, Escudero previously received a regular monthly payola in six figures from the people of the Bureau of Customs when he was still the Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee of the Senate. Sana huwag siyang maging plastik dahil corrupt din siya.

    • Ganymede

      Kaya pala ayaw niya ipa abolish ang BOC.. may pinagsamahan din pala sila ng mga taong nandoon.

  • randyaltarejos

    If the Economic Intelligence and Investigation Bureau (EIIB) was abolished right away, why can’t the BOC? The way I look at it di na magbabago ang mga attitude at corrupt practices ng mga opisyales at emplyedo dyan. Why? Because how can they sustain their lavish lifestyles if they will not resort to corruption activities? It is high time for its abolition and privatized it. At the same time, the government should create an anti-smuggling entity to check on smuggling activities in the country.

  • randyaltarejos

    Merong nag suggest na iprivatize lang yung mga tao lang imbis na ang buong BOC, sa international airports. Di kaya magaling ang mga Pinoy sa kutsabahan? Para naman tayong mga baguhan sa ganintong mga kalakaran. In the long run, the same feathers will flock together at balik saya uli ang mga yan. Kukuning kumpadre sa binyag at kasal, papaano pa makaktanggi si Ninong at Ninang kapag me hiniling ang inaanak?

  • pinoynga

    If Biazon wants to be remembered in PH history as the only customs commissioner that truly made a positive difference in the BOC, then he should push hard for the abolition of customs. But if Malacanang is correct in declaring that this proposal is mere talk and nothing much, then Margaret Thatcher is truly the U.K.’s unbeatable woman prime minister when she said: “If you what something said ask a MAN. If you want something done, ask a WOMAN.” I hope Pinoys Biazon and PNOY will disprove British Margaret Thatcher.

    • tyurl

      Actually, by going to the media about this issue already poses tons of risk on the part of Biazon – financially and politically (not that he is a saint). It takes more than him to carry this out. None could be more valuable than the support of the President.

      • pinoynga

        I agree the President’s support is key. I pray PNOY takes the lead from here on after Biazon’s proposal. It also needs every citizen’s support. With a unified power of thought and prayers, I’m sure we can all jointly move mountains, certainly a no small mountain of corruption at the BOC which may finally be leveled off and crushed.

    • joe__bloggs

      She also said :

      “We can go on as we have been going and continue DOWN.
      Or we can stop and with a decisive act of will we can say “ENOUGH”.”

      When are we, collectively, going to make that act of will and say – ENOUGH!

    • TGM _ERICK

      It is true when one wants something to be done go and ask a woman. We will decide perhaps with lots of ambivalence for it takes time for us to evaluate and once we have our foot down , work is accomplished. Hehehe!

  • amapangarap

    hahaha! naive ba tong si escudero o sadyang bobo? uniforms without pockets and glass topped desks? hahaha!

    i have an ex colleague whose husband works at naia as an xray operator. she told us before that the airport pools everything they recieve and gets it after a week. lahat may share, this way daw, wala magchuchu.

    really senator? is that the best u can think of? im impressed!

    NOT! hahaha!

  • Cobra

    Corruption in the Phils. is so entrenched that when world famous Mr. Tony Kwok head of Hongkong ACAC was invited to investigate corruption in the Phils. during Arroyo’s time he was forced to suspend his work abruptly because he life & safety was threatened.Powerful politicians & their tentacles in the corrupt world made sure he left for good sighting reasons like Filipinos can do a better job,well every Phil. president from Quezon has been trying to stamp out graft & corruption in the country with no apparent success.

  • KappaPhiPhi

    oo, nga pala. can we have bit of info as to what happened to that 2000 plus containers owned by david copperfield? imagine smuggling in 3 years is more than erap’s and gma’s time combined.

  • Paliwaweng

    …big paycheck is not a guarantee that a thief will not steal. A thief is a thief.. Abolish the bureau and borrow the template from Peru.

  • Guest

    Abolish the bureau and put up a new one? How will this new one be different from the existing one? What is the assurance that the new one will not be encroached by the same people (or same kind of people) that is currently making the BIR a nesting ground of leechers? Such a move is joke and just made to make them look as though something is being done. In other words, it is just plain talk. It is just a waste of time not to mention money. To top it off, hire people and give them bigger pay?? As ti is, we are so hard up with cash that we don’t know where to get them and here we are spend more money that we don’t have. If there is something that we should know about is that man don’t know how to be content. Give them a thousand and before long, they ware asking ten thousand. Give in to ten thousand, and soon will be asking a hundred thousand and so on. I share Casino’s sentiments, the first act should come from the top which is the office of the president and do massive revamp kahit sinong kaibigan at kamag-nak pa ang masagasaan.

  • guest

    As they say, talk is cheap. Means it’s easy to talk about something but harder to actually do it. Noynoy should have the guts and commitment to do it.

  • Donardo Cuago

    INSTEAD OF ABOLITION, FILE CASES DAW O!
    As if naman di nila alam kung gaano kabagal ang hustisya dito sa ‘pinas!

  • tyurl

    Escudero: “If the assumption is that everyone there is corrupt, then why not file cases against them whether or not we create a new agency?”
    – Because given our equally corrupt justice system, it will take a millennium to resolve these cases if lodged.

  • tyurl

    Abolish BoC! Now! Perhaps, SWS or Pulse can do a public popularity survey on this measure? Maybe that will help convince our moronic selfish politicos to pursue this because all they care about are populism and money (plenty of it)… Greedy crocs!

  • http://www.facebook.com/simoun.magaalahas.10 Simoun Magaalahas

    hindi kailangan ng abolish ang BOA, ang pinaka maganda dito ay tanggalin nila ang mga tauhan nito mag mula sa janitor hanggang sa pinaka mataas na pinuno ng Ahensya, dahil kahit tanggalin mo man ang pinuno nito kung natitira man ang ugat ay mauulit lang uli ang mga ito sa pangungurakot.

  • jojo_castillo169

    pinakamahirap i demolish ang maraming money involved. pero nagmumula yan sa taas, kung matino ang nagpapatakdo, susunod ang nasa baba…

  • Roy Batty

    Kuripot kasi magbigay ng ‘campaign funds’ itong mga custom brokerage eh kaya niyanig muna sila konti at ng lumaki naman ang patak patak nila para sa LP.

  • wishfull thinking

    Parang di ko yata ma-get ang sinasabi ni Casino…may kamag-anak ba to sa Customs? Syempre after abolishing Customs, start looking for good people to do the job. Pwede kunin uli yun mga Customs personnel na malinis ang track record, yun mga may bahid at di ma-explain ang pagkakaroon ng mga properties…wag na. Bakit sasabihin pa ni Casino na ang smugglers ay private people….of course private people!…pero sinu ba ang corrupt? Sino ba ang nagpapapasok ng smuggled goods….sino ba Casino? Di ba mga taga-Customs?

    • Roy Batty

      Hindi takot lang siya na ma-abolish din pati senado, ngayon pa eh malapit na siya maging kagalang-galang na senador. Kitang kita naman sa sampol niya na analogy kung ano ang dahilan bakit ayaw niya.

  • XY ZEE

    If there’s one thing this administration can be said to be good at…
    Talk and talk and talk and talk.
    Just talk.

  • wishfull thinking

    Hindi ko rin maintindihan si Escudero…anu ba yun…camera sa loob ng Customs? Bakit? mga 5k lang ba ang transactions ng mga ito at sa drawer at under the table lang ito ayos na?…Sir Escudero….mawalang galang na po….milyones po ang transactions nito…ang mga paraan po ay ganito for you info: bibigyan ng kotse ang taga-Customs, bibigyan ng bahay at lupa, papagawan ng bahay, huhulugan ng pera sa “bagong account” ng isang kamag-anak, at marami pang iba na sa “labas” ng opisina ang usapan. SUs marya naman kung di nyo to alam! mga gawain din ito ng halos marami sa tulad nyo na politico!

  • boshog

    What else is new criminals caught and nothing happens. Generals plunder and they are held in high esteem. The Philippine justice system is lame and cannot see the wrongs. Nothing will happen to the perpetrators of massacres, smugglers caught red-handed, government and military plunderers, and those caught in so called surveillance camera all go scot free. What a failure in justice and government.

  • goyong inoki

    Change is something that we have to embrace. For sure only chinese are afraid of change because of stricter rules. They have been dumping garbage in our land

  • redsnow

    Kaya ayaw ko sa boung buhay ko ang mga partylist leftist mga BOBO mga komunista utak walang nagawang kabutihan sa bansa itong mga gropu poru lang daldal walang magandang suggestion BOBO ka Teodoro Casino …. Burahin na yang Custom palitan na yan now nah!! Isama mo ibura sa mapa yan si Teodoro Casino .. Pork barrel sa bar lang niya lagi ginasta sa Makati nababalita yan sa pahayagan

  • Nelson Baguya II

    If biazon is my boss, and im lossing the risk of loosing my billion dollar job and tongpats, wew, I WOULD do everything to make this person out of the BOC. as simple as that.

  • anongaba

    ETO NGA KAPIT BAHAY KO, INSPECTOR LANG YAN HA PERO, 2 ANG PORCHE AT MAY BAHAY SA PUNTA FUEGO WORTH 35 MILLION O SAN KA PA!

  • JasonBieber

    First PNoy says there is no problem then admits there is a problem but just not a major one then says there is a plan but it’s secret then his Administrations says of an overhaul of Customs then they backtrack and say it was just all talk…there’s just so much this and that and then etc…

    What it looks like is PNoy and his Administration has long neglected improving Customs therefore the problem just simply got out of control. It would be best for PNoy to give no more excuses and have some action now.

  • calixto909

    The idea of Biazon has merit if improving the system of collection and defeating corruption in the office is concerned while Casinio on the other hand is a communist whose ideas are all hostile and hubristic meant to create chaos in governance. These candidates associated with communism must be rejected by all electorates averse to communism

    • ConcernedCitizenPh

      Rep Casino is actually protecting the interest of a group of people who benefit from the corruption at customs. He just showed his true color here.

  • phantomofhope

    wow nice idea Sen Escudero! wala na bang iba? :)

  • Alala Peter

    LP 12-0

  • joe__bloggs

    Privatize the BOC?

    BOC employees will just buy themselves into the same positions. They have amassed enough money to be able to afford that.

  • boybakal

    Abolition of Customs….plain talk.
    The Bureau is source of billion, trillion revenue. And talking reform is just plain talk.
    This is serious matter that needs attention.

    We need think tank, MA’s PHD’s people to talk about this.
    This is State Affairs and not a Street Affair for plain talk.

  • captainramius

    Like the pork barrel of the Senate and Congress, this bureau is reported to one of the sources of funds of the “powers that be ” and in turn are distributed among key people in Mlitary , PNP and also to fund election.

    Those in BOC knows how to share to maintain their existence.

    Abolishing this , is like asking the senators and congressmen to abolish their pork barrel.

    So we the poor taxpayers got anything to say ?

  • DonQuixoteDeRizal

    I thought these two messenger boy and girl had long gone. When these guys opened their mouths, confusion follows.

  • mga BaBoY sa Goberno

    Abolishment of the custom is a good idea…ted casino is a foolish jerk not the aquinos admistration. Casino and escudero just like to gain votes thats why they are against that, this people of selfish gain should not be voted.

  • disqusted0fu

    Everything in the Aquino administration is all talk. That’s why actual results are hardly seen nor felt because their words are more often than not unsupported with the necessary actions. It is bad enough that the admin rarely comes up with good ideas, but what’s worse is that they usually fail in materializing them.

  • disqusted0fu

    The fact that smuggling is being discussed means nothing. What vital problem of the PH has the Aquino administration already solved? Or at least significantly acted upon? Their discussion about smuggling will take long enough that the issue will just die without getting resolved and will probably become worse. The immediate overhaul of the BOC is a must, and the chief must be replaced with someone who is not a KKK.

  • mike8232

    This lousy govt headed by BS Aquino is just that – ALL TALK, ALL HOLLOW RHETORIC

  • white scorpion

    perhaps it’s better to abolished it na lang. technically, the whole custom is a sindicate na. any who tried to cleanse it will be the one to suffer the reversal of his intention.

  • JustWords811

    escudero and casino just confirmed to me my opinion of them. so with malacanang. as for Comm. Biazon, my hats off to you.

  • pedro Bato

    Habang pinagtatalunan natin kung ia-abolish o hindi ang bulok na Custong, tatawa tawa lang ang mga BUWAYANG 2 paa sa CUSTONG. . . Alam kasi nila hindi matutuloy ang pag-abolish dito. . . isa pa protektado silang mga buwaya ng inutil na civil service law. Hindi mo matatanggal agad-agad ang mga buwaya, dapat kasuhan muna at dapat malakas ang ebidensya. . .Be kind to animals kasi . .

  • koolkid_inthehouse

    Complete abolition and let all ports open. Collect taxes differently where it’s easy to manage.

  • boybakal

    It’s funny how this gov’t cannot solve the problem of its own.
    Whereas, GMA and Corona were victims of their accusation of corruption.
    They were singled out and punished.
    It is Double Standard of Morality, …violation of human rights.

  • Noriel Bernabe

    THESE TWO SEPARATE STATEMENTS SAYS IT ALL

    ***Casiño, a Bayan Muna party-list representative who has served three terms in the House, said the correct response was “to hold customs officials, including their protectors in Congress and in the executive, accountable for the crime of smuggling.”

    “Most of the time, customs is put in a tight spot because the smugglers [have protectors] in [the House], the Senate and the Palace. If the protectors are not held accountable, any revamp in customs will be for naught,” Casiño said.

    He said President Aquino should be the one to make the “political decision” to stop smuggling, and he must make it even if it meant tangling with his friends in politics and in business.

    ***Asked if Biazon was on his way out, Valte said the customs chief still enjoyed the President’s confidence.

  • Noriel Bernabe

    Reasons why people are happy under noy’s govt.
    -Noy bloated budget of each congressmen’s PDAF while cutting budget on education
    -Almost 10% of our Nat’l budget is loss each year due to corruption
    -Almost a hundred of noynoy’s political allies have pending corruption charges in the office of the ombudsman (Even COA wrote to legislators mostly from noy’s liberal party questioning the use of their PDAF).
    -Recent study showed corruption perception in the government is high hampering economic growth
    – unemployment rate increased by almost a million despite of gdp “growth”
    – More than 1 billion was loss because of the unaccounted CCT
    – 32 billion pesos estimated loss revenue due to rice smuggling
    – P3.6 billion in loss revenue due to missing container vans
    -30 to 40 billion loss due to oil smuggling
    -Very low FOI inspite of the president’s juncket trips abroad and noy’s claims of billion dollar investments
    -the much vaunted PPP has no project to show off after three years
    -Philippines lags compared to other ASEAN nations when it comes to FDI
    -2011 Philippines was named as worse country for investors (East ASIA)
    -Philippines lags in terms of infrastructure compared to its ASEAN neighboring countries
    -Many people from Mindanao were killed by flood due to cancellations of existing flood projects under noy’s admin
    -5 million and 30 million were donated by noynoy to MILF and ABB this happened after MILF ambused our soldiers in mindanao.

    SMUGGLING ESTIMATES: ANNUAL AVERAGE
    IN $ BILLIONS
    Estrada (July 1998- Jan 2001) 3.1
    Arroyo (Feb 2001 – June 2010) 3.8
    Aquino (July 2010 – June 2012) 19.6

    (Based on IMF’s Direction of Trade Statistics)

  • Beguine

    Just fire, sack, dismiss Biazon now immediately asap.

    Fire, sack, dismiss any and all Customs officers even for just being suspected
    of corruption and anomalous deals and dealings.

    Review performance of all officers every six months, and make quick changes and
    replacements based on actual performance and success at doing their duties and
    responsibilities.

    Keep revamping the Customs structural organization as often as necessary with the
    main objective in view to weed out corruption and money-making for their own pocket and bank accounts of Customs officials.

    If all of the above does not work out, invite good people from the private sector to help run Customs in what will be a joint government and private sector venture.

  • boybakal

    Customs’ abolition just plain talk….

    Daming problema ng bansa, plain talk lang ginagamit.
    Wala bang cabinet meeting man lang para pagusapan ang problema.
    Dapat serious talk not plain talk.

  • GustoKoHappyKa

    hindi talaga maalis ang corruption dyan hangat yung parehong empleyado pa din ang nandyan talaga… kahit takutin nyo ng putulan ng titi yan mga tao dyan di magbabago yan..nakatikim na ng madaming pera eh…

  • mamer2

    Ever hear of any country abolishing a long existing department &/or government agency like the Custom or BIR (IRS in the U.S.)…, for the reason of “corruption”…?
    It’s tantamount to abolishing the (a,,,) government for the reason of corruption.

  • tabitabi

    OMG what a joke kahit ano pa ang ipaunipurme kung iyon pa rin ang mga personel.

    i mga talamak na ang mga iyon gagawa at gagawa nang paraan ang mga iyon paano makakurakot.

    ang problema rito ay ang pag paparusa sa may kasalanang corruption hindi lang sa BOC kundi sa lahat nang sangay nang gobyerno.walang katakot takot mag commit nang corruption, kahit harapharapan na.Kasi bihira ang napaparusahan.Lalo na at makapangyarihan nag commit nang corruption.Aminado tayo na rampant ang corruption

    sa Pilipnas pero bakit walang napaparusahan.anu ang mali.

  • X44

    BOC is beyond repair. You cannot change easily something everybody is so comfortable with, much more, benefited from it. They will hold on. Resistance will just choke any change. Instead, better put up a new one.

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