Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña signed on Thursday, August 31, the order abolishing the Command Center; he announced before the employees and officials of the Bureau of Customs in today’s flag raising ceremony held at the Port of Manila.

Customs Memorandum Order No. 14-2017 has reverted to the deputy commissioners of the Intelligence Group, Enforcement Group, and all district collectors nationwide the authority to issue alert orders.

“This is my way of showing my full trust and confidence to the officers and men of the bureau,” Lapeña said.

“I am giving a clean slate for everybody,” said the Customs chief as he bared some of his plans to address corruption and at the same time increase Bureau’s revenue.

He reiterated the call to stop the culture of “pasalubong” and “tara” and to strictly implement the “no gift and no take policy,” adding that these illegal practices are bringing the name of the agency down the drain.

To institute accountability and boost internal cleansing within the agency, Lapeña plans to implement a one-strike policy against erring bureau officials and employees through intensified counter-intelligence efforts.

“Once I receive reports of your involvement with corrupt practices and such reports are validated, you will see immediate action based on the offense committed,” Lapeña said as he warns employees and officials.

He also urged the public to arrest, by virtue of citizen’s arrest, anyone who would use his name to facilitate unlawful activities in the agency, adding that he will be observing zero tolerance for corruption.

The Commissioner also emphasized the need for an improved incentive and reward system for all personnel who remain persistent in performing their duties and responsibilities with commitment, competence, and integrity.

Another priority of Commissioner Lapeña is to improve the revenue performance of the agency.

To achieve this, the Customs chief said BOC personnel must perform jobs properly and strictly implement the customs laws, rules and regulations to improve the bureau’s revenue efficiency.

The BOC chief calls on bureau officials and personnel to help him institute reforms that would regain the public’s trust.

“I am not here to pass judgment. I do not care about the past, I do not mind the various issues thrown to the bureau and the reports that I received, but I am here to institute changes, changes that would help regain public trust and confidence to the bureau.”

“Help me reform the bureau, help me in my mission to liberate the bureau from the clutches of corruption and hit its collection target as ordered by the President,” Lapeña said.

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