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Palace insists President will not intervene in shabu shipment issue

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Palace insists President will not intervene in shabu shipment issue

/ 05:30 PM August 11, 2017
Ernesto Abella

Presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/JOAN BONDOC

Malacañang on Friday said President Rodrigo Duterte would not interfere on the issue of the P6.4-billion worth of illegal drugs from China that slipped through the Bureau of Customs (BOC) last May following the series of congressional investigations on the issue.

“Well, as the President said, he has not, he does not intervene in matters like this. He will allow the process to unfold,” Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella said in a Palace briefing.

Senators Panfilo Lacson and Antonio Trillanes IV have questioned Duterte’s silence regarding the shabu mess at the BOC.

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“I think it’s not unusual that he’s quiet about that. It’s simply saying that he will not interfere because the process has begun,” Abella said.

Customs Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon and other top Customs officials are under fire for the shabu shipment entering the country without inspection, in violation of customs regulations.

Customs broker Mark Taguba earlier dropped several names in the government who were on the take regarding smuggling.

One of the names that cropped up was Duterte’s son, Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte, who immediately denied the accusations.

During the congressional hearing, the broker said it was only a rumor. The younger Duterte dared Taguba to show proof because all the statements being issued were based on rumors.

Abella said it would be up to the President to fire Faeldon, who is now having a bed rest due to heart problems.

“You know, whatever it is, it will have to be the President’s decision,” he said.

The Palace official said Malacañang won’t “indulge in speculation” after Trillanes said that someone close to the President was behind the P6.4-billion worth of illegal drugs from China.

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Duterte on Wednesday said he was ready to resign if the corruption allegation against his son was proven.

READ: Duterte: I’ll resign if corruption claim vs son proven true

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TAGS: Bureau of Customs, Malacañang, Nicanor Faeldon, Paolo Duterte, Rodrigo Duterte, shabu shipment
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