Duterte still trusts BOC chief Lapena: Roque
President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered concerned government agencies to recover a ton of shabu worth P6.8 billion which was not detected by the Bureau of Customs when it was allegedly smuggled into the country.
Despite this, Duterte still trusts BOC Commissioner Isidro Lapena, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said.
"He (Duterte) trusts General Lapena, he trusts PDEA (Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency). He expects closer coordination between PDEA and the Bureau of Customs," Roque said in a press briefing, noting Lapena used to head PDEA before he was appointed as the BOC chief.
"But we need to address this and there is a need to identify who is behind this in order to trace who should we go after for these drugs which were smuggled here, if there were really," he said.
PDEA Director General Aaron Aquino earlier said the shabu shipment managed to enter the country because some BOC personnel could be in connivance with the drug syndicates.
The huge volume of shabu was allegedly placed in several magnetic lifters which could not be traced using the X-ray machines.
Roque said there could be a need to review the system at the BOC.
"Well, obviously this is a new strategy. Who could ever think that they (illegal drugs) would be brought in using an equipment that once they are inside, they could not be detected? So short of opening all shipment because that is impossible, so perhaps there is a need to review the Customs' system," Roque explained. Celerina Monte/DMS