Jul 222013
(Updated 1:43 a.m., 23 July 2013) Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon on Monday night said he “offered” his resignation from government, following President Benigno Aquino III’s statement against the Bureau of Customs during his fourth State of the Nation Address (SONA).

Aquino, however, did not accept his resignation, Biazon tweeted.

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) was one of the three government agencies berated by the President in his mid-term SONA. The other two were the Bureau of Immigration, whose head Ricardo David resigned last week, and the National Irrigation Administration.

Later, Biazon expounded more on the matter through both his Facebook account and his blog.

He thanked the President for his appreciation of the difficulties involved in trying to reform the BOC, recalling that he took on the commissioner’s job “motivated by the President’s will and vision to reform the entire government, which makes it possible to the break the ‘kalakaran’ which has ruled Customs for generations.”

However, ever present was the possibility a failure which would leave him “frustrated and damaged.”

Also, after he had offered his resignation, Biazon said that he received reactions and advice through social media. Some of the feedback asked him to stay at his post, while others advised him to resign despite the President’s message of confidence.

The matter is still up in the air, according to Biazon. He remains on the job, but “all of these I have to absorb and process.”

Meanwhile, during an interview on Monday night’s episode of GMA News TV’s “State of the Nation with Jessica Soho”, Biazon defended the Customs Bureau’s performance.

“Ang collection namin, pataas. Growth parati compared to previous years,” said Biazon, “Nasa record ‘yan.”

However, the commissioner admitted that despite this growth, the BOC was still unable to meet its targets. “Kasi, may iba’t-ibang factors yan,” he explained, “Tungkol doon sa free-trade agreements na pinasok ng ating bansa, slow down ng economy so buong daigdig, etc.”

Biazon also pointed out that his bureau filed cases against smugglers every other week.

“The record speaks for itself. Unfortunately, pauli-ulit sinasabing: ‘Bagsak ang koleksyon. Walang nahuhuli,’ he argued.

“Taliwas naman  doon sa pinapakita namin doon sa balita halos everyday.” — KBK/DVM, GMA News

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