Corruption at Customs continues, says Lacson | Inquirer News

Corruption at Customs continues, says Lacson

By: - Reporter / @MAgerINQ
/ 01:59 PM April 24, 2015


Secretary Panfilo Lacson. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

The corruption at the Bureau of Customs (BoC) continues, former  Senator  Panfilo Lacson said Friday, citing reports that he has been getting.

“Based on reports I’ve been receiving from knowledgable persons, the corruption continues at the bureau,” Lacson said in a text message.


“In fact, Commissioner Sevilla admitted that it was not his illusion for corruption to stop at Customs. It shouldn’t be an illusion but an objective or target to eradicate corruption under his watch,” he said, referring to resigned  BoC Commissioner  John  Phillip Sevilla.


Sevilla announced his resignation Thursday and was  immediately  replaced by Alberto Lina, who headed the BoC until 2005 during the Arroyo administration.

READ:  BOC chief quits, cites politics

Lacson believes that  Lina was  the right choice  to replace Sevilla given  his integrity and knowledge of the job.

But asked if he thinks the new Customs chief could address the problems in the agency,  the former senator said:  “As long as the Friday 3 o’clock habit is not licked, it only means that the ‘tara’ system is not eliminated.”

“Therefore, organized corruption still exists,” Lacson said.

The Friday “three o’clock habit”  was said to be the alleged weekly meeting among customs employees and importers where multimillion-peso bribes are given and divided up.


READ: 3 p.m. Friday meetings still a Customs habit, says Lacson

Meanwhile, Senator Sonny Angara was hopeful that the new Customs  chief will continue the reforms that  Sevilla has started  in the agency.

“It’s very unfortunate because Commissioner Sevilla was known for being incorruptible and he’s not being led by money or influence,” he said in a separate text message.

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“We are hoping that new Commissioner Lina will continue whatever reforms Sevilla has instituted. The BOC is important in spreading and easing the trade in the country,” added Angara, chairman of the Senate committee on ways and means. DPL

TAGS: Alberto Lina, BOC, corruption, Government, Sonny Angara

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