PBBM to revamp Bureau of Customs?

PBBM to revamp Bureau of Customs?

By Junex Doronio
January 17, 2023

MANILA — Despite the trumpeting of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) under the leadership of Acting Commissioner Yogi Filemon Ruiz that it has achieved its highest annual revenue collection in history amounting to P862.929 billion, still President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. expressed dissatisfaction and reportedly eyeing digitization to curb what he said as widespread smuggling in the country.

Customs insiders noted that with the President’s statement, there could be “major changes” in the offing, notwithstanding BOC exceeding its target collection of P721.52 billion by 19.6% or P141.409 billion on its preliminary report.

For several months, there have been rumors that Ruiz — known to be a protege of former BOC Commissioner Isidro Lapeña — would be replaced “soon” since he is only in “an acting capacity” as Customs chief.

Ruiz only took his oath before PBBM at the Malacañang Palace on July 20 last year as the Acting Commissioner of BOC.

Both Lapeña and Ruiz had served the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).

Reliable sources told Maharlika TV News that a former police general would likely replace Ruiz who was appointed when lawyer Vic Rodriguez was still the Executive Secretary.

Meanwhile, the President was seriously considering the implementation of digitalization at the BOC.

“So we have to really look into that, and we have some very good ideas,” PBBM told journalists aboard the presidential plane en route to Switzerland on Sunday, January 15.

He added: “We see what the other people are doing in other countries, and we can use some of the strategies that they are using. I think the digitalization of the Bureau of Customs is going to be an important, important part of that.” (ai/mtvn)


Photo Caption: Yogi Ruiz only took his oath before PBBM at the Malacañang Palace on July 20 last year as the Acting Commissioner of BOC.

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