NEW Customs Commissioner Isidro “Sid” Lapeña officially took over the reins from Nicanor Faeldon at the Bureau of Customs on Wednesday.
The Manila Times researched on the new man at the helm of what is considered as one of the most corrupt government agencies.
Role in war on drugs
In July 2016, Lapeña was appointed by Undersecretary Arturo G. Cacdad Jr. as PDEA chief. He organized several anti-illegal drug seminars, talks, and activities.
Lapeña also emphasized the need to evaluate communities in the barangay level—a small step to eradicate the proliferation of illegal drugs.
In 2017, Lapeña enforced barangay drug-clearing programs; set up anti-drug abuse councils nationwide.
PDEA spearheaded the war on drugs under Lapeña’s leadership after the Philippine National Police (PNP) suspended its campaign in February amid accusations that it was responsible for the growing number of extrajudicial killings (EJKs).
Career as a police officer
In his early years, Lapeña pursued the role of a cadet officer. He was a member of the Philippine Military Academy “Maagap” Class of 1973.
He was a junior officer in the defunct Philippine Constabulary; had been chief of the 456th Police Constabulary Company (1979), the Cotabato Police Office (1992) and the Davao City Police Office (1997).
He also served as the PNP director for operations and acting chief of the PNP Directorial Staff before retiring in 2007.
He also served as Davao City’s public safety command center chief and was part of Duterte’s security team during the presidential campaign.
His 34-year career as a police officer earned for him the trust and support of the President.
Duterte sees Lapeña as a firm and truthful guy, with a sense of responsibility that could help him solve the problem of corruption at the BOC.
Up close and personal
Also known as Sid, Lapeña was seen as a young, responsible boy in his province and admired by many for his humility, dignity, and strength in character.
A native of Urdaneta, Pangasinan, Lapeña was raised by an elementary school teacher; he graduated from a public high school.
He is recognized as an upright man that led a disciplined way of life; maintains high regard for the principle of welfare; and favors the death penalty.
Question is will he succeed where others before him have failed? YSABEL PADUA
Gita, Ruth Abbey. “Duterte names Lapeña as Faeldon’s replacement.” SunStar Manila 21 August 2017: 1. http://www.sunstar.com.ph/manila/local-news/2017/08/21/duterte-names-lapena-faeldons-replacement-559745 Accessed 27 August 2017.
Iglesias, Iza. “PDEA welcomes Lapeña as new director general.” The Manila Times 7 June 2016: 1. http://www.manilatimes.net/pdea-welcomes-lapena-as-new-director-general/266528/ Accessed 27 August 2017.
Valente, Catherine S. “PDEA claims success in drug war.” The Manila Times 1 July 2017: 1. http://www.manilatimes.net/pdea-claims-success-drug-war/335848/ Accessed 27 August 2017.
Villamente, Jing. “PDEA SETS GUIDELINES FOR DRUG-CLEARING PROGRAM.” The Manila Times 19 February 2017: 1. http://www.manilatimes.net/pdea-sets-guidelines-drug-clearing-program/313118/ Accessed 27 August 2017.