Lim out of Customs, to get new govt post

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LANANG, DAVAO CITY: President Benigno Aquino 3rd confirmed Thursday that Deputy Commissioner for Intelligence Danilo Lim is out of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) and will be given a new post in government.

In an interview at the sidelines of a business summit here on Thursday, the President said that he has accepted Lim’s resignation.

Aquino said that Lim will be given a new assignment but he did not say where.

”We’re still in the process of discussing where exactly his new assignment will be. He will be given a new task out of Customs,” the President told reporters.


He said that he recently talked to Lim who had claimed that “powerful forces” are meddling in the bureau.

”I spent most of the time getting briefed on the nitty-gritty as far as the Customs is concerned. The problems that he encountered, issues para mas mabigyan ng substance iyong aking mga suspicions before.”

A senior Customs official claimed that Lim may be appointed either as commissioner of the Bureau of Immigration or as director of the Clark Development Corp. (CDC) or the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA).

The official, who asked that his name be withheld, said that it is also possible that Lim may be appointed as Customs commissioner.

Reports said Lim may be replaced by either retired Philippine National Police Deputy Director General Rex Piad or former Customs Deputy Commissioner Reynaldo Nicolas.

Piad is a member of the Philippine Military Academy Matatag Class of 1971. Among his prominent mistahs or classmates are Sen. Gregorio Honasan and former Sen. Panfilo Lacson.

Nicolas, meanwhile, was booted out as Customs deputy commissioner in 2010 for allegedly lacking the required career executive service eligibility.

He appealed his case before the Civil Service Commission (CSC). The commission came out with a resolution on August 15, 2011 reinstating him.

Lim and Deputy Customs Commissioner for Internal Administration GroupJuan Lorenzo Tañada resigned days after the Customs got a tongue-lashing from the President in his State of the Nation Address.

But Aquino said he has not spoken with Tañada, and that Customs Commissioner Rozzano Rufino “Ruffy” Biazon wants to retain him in the bureau.

The President also said there will be radical changes at the bureau.

“Within a month after we finish the plans, you will see a radical transformation of the Bureau of Customs,” he said.

Biazon earlier asked the bureau’s 17 district directors to filetheir courtesy resignation as part of the bureau’s renewed reform efforts.

Meanwhile, the CSC ruled that the appointment of Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS) chief Richard Rebong is anomalous and should be revoked for lack of credibility and for skipping more than “three levels of salary grades.”

“Walang merit and kanyang promotion [his promotion has no merit,” CSC Chairman Francisco Duque 3rd said in a radio interview.

He said the normal salary grade increase is only three levels up, and for “very very meritous cases can go up to five to eight levels up.”

Duque recommended that Biazon either “bring him down to the right office or post, or remove him from office.”

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