Davao officials told: Double efforts vs smuggling

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Monday, January 6, 2014


DAVAO CITY -- Mayor Rodrigo Duterte gathered local authorities on Monday and directed them to "double their efforts" against all forms of smuggling in the city.

He also told them to refrain from asking any bribe money from violators.

Aside from the Bureau of Customs, Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, and the Highway Patrol group, Duterte also requested the National Bureau of Investigation and the Philippine Coast Guard to reinforce in tracking down smugglers.

The Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. was also present during the closed-door conference at the City Hall.

In a press conference after the meeting, Duterte said he ordered authorities to set up checkpoints around the city.

"Ang hingi ko lang, wag sila mag-hingi ng pera. Kung hulihin nila, hulihin nila. Because smuggling is not an exclusive property of the Customs. It's a crime. So any law enforcement guy can certainly interdict what's being done there," Duterte said.

He said his orders to the authorities are "bound by the request of the National Government."

"I was given a specific order. Ayoko nang magsalita. Request came first from [Kim] Henares then somebody said, you help Henares," he said.

Duterte on Sunday said he might instead resort to "killing" these smugglers if they would not stop from doing illegal activities in Davao City. [Read the related story.]

"If you fail to desist from smuggling, I will kill you," he said in vernacular.

Duterte cited anew a certain David Tan, who allegedly is into rice smuggling.

He said he has no personal information about Tan as he has just also learned about him through national broadsheets.

"Itong Pilipinas na to. Walang batas na nasusunod dito. Everybody's flunking the law. Dito sa Davao hindi pwede yan. Davao City has a functioning government and it will function, I assure you," he said. (Sun.Star Davao/Sunnex)

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on January 07, 2014.

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