Palace hands off on BOC corruption probe

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 25 2015 06:21 PM | Updated as of Apr 26 2015 04:47 PM

MANILA - The Palace is keeping its hands off a possible congressional investigation into allegations of rampant corruption in the Bureau of Customs (BOC).

In a radio interview on Saturday, Communications Secretary Sonny Coloma said they would respect any move by Congress or the Senate to investigate the alleged corrupt practices and influence peddling in the bureau.

Coloma said they would also not interfere in resigned BOC commissioner John Sevilla's decision to face the probe or not.

"Ngayon po siya ay isa nang pribadong indibidwal. Hindi na po siya sakop ng pamahalaan dahil nagbitiw na nga po siya. At nasa kanya na pong personal at pribadong desisyon ang bagay na 'yan," Coloma said.

"Hinggil naman sa pagsisiyasat ay nasa desisyon na rin po 'yan ng Kongreso kung nais nilang magsiyasat dahil sila naman ay hiwalay at kapantay na sangay ng pamahalaan," he added.

Sevilla recently resigned as BOC commissioner, citing intense politics and influence peddling in the bureau.

Senator Aquilino Pimentel III said he would file a resolution to conduct an inquiry into Sevilla's claim that the bureau was being used by some groups to accumulate campaign funds for the 2016 elections.

Sevilla, for his part, said he is willing to face a congressional investigation but indicated that he might not be ready to name names, may it be in an executive session at the Senate or the House of Representatives. -- With report from The Philippine Star