President Rodrigo Roa Duterte led the destruction of P61.626 million worth of smuggled luxury vehicles at the Port Area in Manila on Tuesday, February 6.
The Chief Executive noted that smuggling has been going on for centuries already.
“Itong smuggling na ito, this kind of racket has been going on again and again, and again, over a period of centuries. Well, it has to stop,” he said.
Duterte explained that putting the luxury cars into auction would only allow the syndicates to bid for the seized vehicles.
“Ayaw kong ipagbili kasi kung ipagbili ko, consigned to a fictitious person, igagarahe lang ninyo ‘yan diyan… and when the time comes, they are sold to an auction, ‘yung auction diyang opisina, itatawag na rin sa isang sindikato dito, siya lang ‘yan eh,” he said.
“Huminto kayo, huminto kayo. At least during my time, I plead to you,” he added.
A total of 20 second-hand luxury vehicles were destroyed in Manila, including Lexus, BMW, Mercedes Benz, Audi, Jaguar, and Corvette Stingray.
Simultaneous condemnation of seized motor vehicles were also held at the Port of Davao and Port of Cebu where a total of 10 vehicles were destroyed.
After the condemnation of the seized motor vehicles, President Duterte then graced the 116th anniversary of the Bureau of Customs (BOC).
He recognized the long and challenging journey of the agency as it strove to curb customs fraud and facilitate trade through effective customs management system.
“However, much remains to be done. The BOC needs to improve its overall revenue collection to meet its target so that the government will have more funds for its priority development programs,” he stressed.
The President also witnessed the awarding of the top 10 performing ports in terms of revenue collection, led by the ports of Batangas, Cebu, Davao, Cagayan de Oro, Iloilo, and San Fernando.
In his report to the President, BOC Commissioner Isidro Lapeña said the Bureau has been implementing ‘No Tara, No Pasalubong, No Gift, No Take’ policy.
The Bureau has also carried out ‘One-Strike’ policy against erring employees, where 641 officials and employees were reshuffled to provincial ports in 2017 while 139 personnel were reassigned to other posts this year.
In terms of revenue generation, the BOC collected P457.638 billion last year, 97.8 percent against its P467.896 billion target. ### (PND)