No case yet vs container terminal execs-A A +A
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
THE National Bureau of Immigration (NBI) cannot yet summon officials of the Mindanao International Container Terminal (MICT) in Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental in connection with the smuggling case filed against Lynard Allan Bigcas.
Lawyer Jose Justo Yap, NBI-Northern Mindanao director, said the Bureau of Customs (BOC) had not yet furnished them copies of the documents they requested in connection with Bigca's smuggling case.
"Initially they provided us with the documents but some of those we have requested have not been given yet and we're waiting for that," Yap told Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro.
The NBI earlier planned to subpoena some officials of the MICT for their alleged involvement in the smuggling activities of Bigcas.
Related to this, Zambales Representative Mitos Magsaysay (1st district) said BOC Commissioner Angelito Alvarez should be held administratively and criminally liable for his misdeeds as chief of the Customs bureau.
Magsaysay even urged Alvarez to resign from his post if he had any sense of decency following blows from several issues of irregularities under his leadership.
Among the alleged irregularities include the mysterious disappearance of over 2,000 containers of goods from the Port of Manila, which Magsaysay said cost the government over P3 billion worth of lost revenues.
"And now, Alvarez wants to add another nail to his coffin with the emergence of new evidence of his incompetence for failure to act on the mis-declared imports of Pilipinas Shell worth over P1.5 billion in excise taxes and Value Added Tax," Magsaysay said.
Earlier, it was Collector Juan Tan from Batangas Port who discovered the discrepancy in Shell's shipments that were declared as alkalyte but are tested to be motor gasoline.
Findings of Tan's "discovery" were forwarded to Alvarez as early as June 11 this year.
However, Magsaysay said instead of commending Tan, Alvarez allegedly convinced the collector to back off from the Shell case and called Tan to his office to facilitate a meeting with a Shell representative to settle the issue.
"For heaven's sake, relieve him of his post before the situation in our ports grows any worse. He does not deserve to stay another day in office," Magsaysay said, adding that Alvarez is seemingly confident that President Benigno Aquino III will not sack him from his post.
But Cagayan de Oro Representative Rufus B. Rodriguez (2nd district) said Alvarez would still be given due process where he could answer all the allegations against him.
"We should wait for the result of the investigation of the NBI before investigating BOC officials, especially Alvarez," Rodriguez said. (ALR)
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on August 24, 2011.