LP senators call Faeldon appointment to defense post a ‘loss of justice’
Liberal Party senators have lamented what they described as “loss of justice” after President Rodrigo Duterte appointed former Bureau of Customs (BOC) chief Nicanor Faeldon to a defense department post.
In a joint statement on Thursday, Senators Francis Pangilinan, Bam Aquino, and Franklin Drilon advised President Duterte that his appointees should have unblemished reputation if he’s really serious in eradicating corruption in his administration.
“While we respect the President’s prerogative to appoint personalities to positions he deems fit, he must avoid appointing those with questionable integrity and moreso those linked to corruption scandals. The Filipino people need honest men in government service,” said Pangilinan.
Duterte should have waited for legal processes to finish in Faeldon’s case before appointing him as the deputy administrator of the Office of Civil Defense, which is under the Department of National Defense (DND).
“Ibinasura man ng Department of Justice ang kaso laban kay Faeldon, subalit naghain na ng apela ang mga karampatang ahensiya tulad ng PDEA (Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency) kaya dapat pinatapos muna ito ng Pangulo,” said Aquino.
(The Department of Justice has junked the case against Faeldon, but appeals have been filed by concerned agencies such as PDEA, thus the President should have let the legal process be concluded first.)
Faeldon faced charges over the P6.4 billion shabu shipment that went past the BOC’s inspection under his watch. Drug-related charges against Faeldon were later dropped by the Department of Justice.
Meanwhile, Drilon said appointing officials involved in previous anomalies to another position would send a negative message to other members of the bureaucracy that those close to the powers-that-be are rewarded despite their alleged corrupt ways.
Drilon pointed out that this was also the case when Duterte appointed other former Customs officials involved in the shabu smuggling to different positions.
Customs collector Vincent Philip Maronilla was recently reassigned as district collector at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), while former Customs officials Gerardo Gambala and Milo Maestrecampo were appointed to the Department of Transportation in different capacities.
Maronilla led the Manila International Container Port (MICP) when 604 kilograms of shabu from China entered the country through MICP last May while Maestrecampo and Gambala were holding key positions at the Bureau of Customs when the smuggling occurred./asu
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