MANILA - Former Customs Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon should not be assigned to any other government post as President Rodrigo Duterte had proposed, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said Wednesday.
"Kung halimbawa lang pong mapapakinggan tayo ng Pangulo, mas maganda pong 'wag nang bigyan ng iba pang posisyon dahil sa aming napag-alaman, sa aming pananliksik, sa mga boluntaryong binigay na impormasyon," he said in an interpellation after delivering his privilege speech on corruption at the Bureau of Customs (BOC).
In his speech, Lacson said Faeldon took a P100-million welcome gift upon his appointment as BOC chief last year. Faeldon, who was relieved Monday, denied the charge and said he never accepted grease money.
Lacson also named several personnel in the bureau who received kickbacks, according to information culled from several sources. He said the sources include people from the Customs' top and middle levels, rank and file personnel, brokers, and other players.
The lawmaker called on his fellow lawmakers to "sustain" their action against corruption.
"'Pag pinabayaan natin ito at hindi natin in-exercise ang ating oversight authority over the executive offices or agencies, talagang mapapabayaan na naman ito," he said.
The Senate Blue Ribbon Committee has been investigating the smuggling of P6.4-billion worth of shabu from China last May, after it slipped past the Manila port.
In a hearing on Tuesday, broker Mark Taguba named several personalities who allegedly took bribes to allow the release of contraband through the BOC.
Duterte has appointed Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) chief Isidro Lapeña to replace Faeldon, but said he continues to trust the former Marine captain.
The President earlier said Faeldon filed his resignation thrice.
"I have no reason really to doubt (Faeldon). Government would need Faeldon. But where, I really do not know," said Duterte of the former soldier, among those who revolted against government corruption in the July 2003 Oakwood mutiny.
LACSON CALLS FOR LEADERSHIP BY EXAMPLE AT BOC
Lacson, a former Philippine National Police chief, said the most important lesson his training has taught him is "leadership by example.
"There is no substitute to that dictum, kasi pag 'yung namumuno ay 'yung kaniyang pini-preach, 'yung kaniyang sinasabi ay hindi naman niya ginagawa o ginagawa 'yung laban sa kaniyang pinapatupad, walang susunod sa kaniya," he said.
"Pag nakita nila 'yung kanilang pinuno ay consistent ang ginagawa, na namumuno by good example, maski 'yung mga kawatan doon, palagay ko ay kung hindi mahihiya ay matatakot dahil alam nilang seryoso 'yung pinuno," he added.
Lacson said he could vouch for Lapeña's personal integrity, saying he hopes the former police general "continues leading by example."
"I hope I am not mistaken sa pagsasabing kilala ko siya na ganung ka-honorableng tao, saka mataas 'yung kaniyang integridad. I hope na 'yung kaniyang gagawin sa bureau sa kaniyang pamumuno, maging consistent lang," said Lacson.