MANILA, Philippines - President Aquino said his administration has taken the steps to reform the Bureau of Customs, likening it to pressing the "reset" button.
“Naging malinaw po sa atin: Kung babalasahin lang natin ang mga nasa puwesto, pero ilalagay pa rin sila sa kung saan sila maaaring gumawa ng pinsala, talaga pong wala tayong patutunguhan. Ang atin pong tugon: Reset button para sa ahensyang matagal nang naging mukha ng katiwalian sa gobyerno,” Aquino said in his speech before the breakfast gathering of the Brotherhood of Christian Businessmen and Professionals (BCBP).
Aquino is referring to previously announced appointments of five new deputy commissioners including former AFP chief of staff Jessie Dellosa as deputy commissioner of the Customs enforcement group.
The President also signed an executive order creating the Customs Policy Research Office (CPRO) to help the agency improve revenue collections.
Aquino however noted the temporary restraining order that a court has issued against the transfer of Customs collections to this new office.
“I think you are all aware yesterday, ‘yung ating Customs reforms may TRO na naman from a Regional Trial Court, So, kayo na magsabi sa akin kung anong dapat na pananaw doon,” Aquino said.
In the meantime, Customs employees have been asked to return to their “mother units” to prevent arbitrary assignments of unscrupulous personnel in lucrative ports.
Aquino said the agency is also doing away with the “padrino” system that allows backers to serve as patrons and lobby posts for favored employees.
“Iniatas din ang pag-uwi sa tamang posisyon ng mga naka-detail na empleyado; wala nang security guard na ginawang collecting officer, o warehouseman na examiner; hindi na pwedeng nasa puwesto ka dahil sa palakasan, at hindi sa kakayahan. Kaya kung may natitira pa ring mga latak na nais kumapit sa lumang kalakaran: Sige po, subukan na lang po ninyo, at tingnan natin ang inyong paglalagyan,” Aquino said.