BoC declares war on smuggling PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 21 April 2018 17:14

By ELY DUMABOC

Newly- installed  Bureau of  Customs (BoC) Zamboanga district collector Atty. Lyceo C. Martinez yesterday  declared a “total war against smugglers  of imported rice and other goods” in Zamboanga Peninsula and in the island provinces of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi (BaSulta).

Atty. Martinez stressed that it is high time that importers here in the city and those in the nearby provinces should properly import goods and pay the necessary Customs duties and taxes.

“We are giving a stern warning to all smugglers that any shipment of contraband shall be confiscated upon arrival at any ports or mini-wharfs here in the city and in all ports located in the BaSulTa area,” the newly-appointed customs district collector told reporters in an interview.

According to Martinez, he has already conferred with top  military and police officials in the city and the region where they discussed aggressive measures that would greatly help curve smuggling activities.

Martinez also met with some importers in Sulu province and in Zamboanga City to reiterate to them the urgent need to help the BoC to meet its monthly target collection.

“I met on different occasions with some traders in this city and in Sulu and I appeal to them to help BoC by paying  the  corresponding importation taxes due to the BoC in  this city,” Martinez said.

He added that most of them had signified their willingness to pay their importation taxes to the BoC.

“Hindi naman pala sila mahirap kausapin.

Naintindihan din nila and situation naming at the BoC,” Martinez stressed.

During  a  meeting with  Brig. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana,  commander of the Joint Task Force-Sulu, Martinez said Sobejana has assured him of his help by intensifying their campaign on anti- smuggling in Sulu.

Martinez said that the  measures that  Sobejana will be adopting  will surely boost  BoC  campaign on anti- smuggling and thus will improve the  revenue collection of BoC in the region.

Martinez revealed that BoC here has failed to meet its monthly target collection since June last year.

He also lauded Rear Admiral Rene V. Medina, commander of the Naval Forces Western Mindanao (NFWM), for  apprehending M/V Diamond 8, loaded  with  27,180  bags of Vietnam rice  with an estimated  market value of P67,950, 000.

The navy apprehended the vessel at vicinity of 15 nautical miles Southwest off Olutanga Island in Sibugay Province  on Saturday, April 14.

Martinez said the Philippine Navy and the Philippine Coast Guard are their “working arms” at sea in their campaign on smuggling activities. -- Ely Dumaboc