PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte is not heeding calls from lawmakers to fire Customs Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon after being embroiled in the controversy over the P6.4 billion worth of illicit drugs from China that slipped past the country’s ports.
In a statement on Tuesday, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez 3rd said Faeldon still enjoyed the President’s “full confidence.”
“The Chief Executive has expressed his full confidence in Commissioner Faeldon and told him to focus on serving the country,” Dominguez told reporters.
Dominguez issued the statement following the President’s meeting with Faeldon on Tuesday afternoon.
The agenda of the meeting, however, was not revealed by the Palace.
Aside from Faeldon and Dominguez, Duterte also met with Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea and Bureau of Internal Revenue Chief Cesar Dulay.
The Bureau of Customs (BOC) is under the supervision of the Department of Finance.
The meeting came after Faeldon was grilled at the House of Representatives earlier on Tuesday and by the Senate on Monday over P6.4 billion worth of “shabu” that was illegally smuggled through Customs last May. The shipment was seized in an operation conducted in Valenzuela warehouses days after.
A broker who testified in an executive session at the Senate supposedly claimed that Customs officials were involved in the smuggling of the illegal drug.
Before meeting the President on Tuesday, Faeldon told the House committee on drugs that was investigating the drug smuggling incident that he would not resign and that he would let the President fire him.