FORMER Bureau of Customs (BOC) chair Nicanor Faeldon on Thursday, August 24, accused Senator Panfilo Lacson's son of smuggling and bribing customs staff.
Faeldon pointed out that during his first month of BOC leadership, anomalous shipments totaled to 67 were spotted and penalized, all of which "belong" to Panfilo Lacson Jr.
His statement came after Lacson said Faeldon is the most corrupt official in BOC and a recipient of the "tara (grease money) system" in said agency.
READ: Lacson names 'tara' recipients at BOC, tags Faeldon as most corrupt
He accused Faeldon receiving a P100 million "pasalubong" or welcome gift from a group that has been operating in the bureau for quite a long time.
In a press conference, Faeldon said he admires Lacson "for he is the only senator who does not accept the pork barrel", but he added he is shocked when he came out with such irresponsible allegation.
"You want to be portrayed as clean? Do you want to run for president again at our expense?," Faeldon said.
He said he can vouch for the integrity of the customs officials named by Lacson.
He said he was still new in his office when one of Panfilo Jr.'s staff visited his office and gave money to one of his staff saying "dito na po kami magbabayad (we will pay here henceforth)."
"What do you call this? Wala naman cashier o ano sa office ko," Faeldon said.
The former BOC official said it was in 2016 when one of his staff gave him a green light of a cement shipment that was declared undervalued.
Upon investigation, it was discovered that the owner of the company named "Bonjornou" is Panfilo Jr's.
The freight cost declared by the shipment was $8 per metric ton which, according to Faeldon is undervalued at fifty percent as the prevailing market value is $16 to $20 per metric ton.
"Ano violation niya? Siempre this is smuggling," Faeldon said adding at least P34 million is lost to government.
"Bonjornou ang pangalan nang company at 67 na barko ang pinarating. Bilyon po halaga nito at ang capitalization ay P20 thousand," he said.
Faeldon then posed a question directed to Senator Lacson: "Ask ko to sayo player ka ba? P20,000 lang ang capitalization nang anak ninyo."
Faeldon then said that this could be the reason for Lacson's accusations. "Eto ang kinatatakutan ko kasi we are heading to exposing you. We now have the evidence to show you," he said.
Faeldon also showed a document saying the Cement Manufacturers Association in the Philippines named "Bonjornou" as the number one smuggler in the country.
He said this is only the tip of the iceberg in relation to the massive corruption in the BOC.
"But hindi ako responsable (sa corruption) Mr Lacson. I am a responsible citizen and a responsible government official. Hindi ako maninira nang kapwa ko," Faeldon added.
"The respnsibility to investigate is no longer in my hands. Now, I challenge the next BOC commissioner to reveal this in public," Faeldon said. (CID/VLA/SunStar Philippines)