Customs Commissioner Bienvenido Rubio has ordered the revamp of district collectors in major ports and other key officers to “further improve the agency’s collection performance.”
Included in the reshuffle, based on Rubio’s Customs Personnel Order (CPO) dated May 10, 2023, were collectors of the so-called “billionaires ports’ – Port of Manila (PoM), Manila International Container Port (MICP) and Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
Maritess Martin of Port of Subic replaced Manila port collector Michael Angelo Vargas who was transferred as deputy collector for administration in the MICP.
NAIA district collector Carmelita Talusan, who was transferred to Subic, was replaced by Maria Yasmin Obillos-Mapa while MICP collector Arnoldo Famor, who was designated as chief of Paircargo Assessment
Composite Unit in NAIA, was replaced by Romeo Allan Rosales from the Office of the Commissioner (Ocom).
Cebu port collector Elvira Cruz, who was transferred to Clark, was replaced by Iloilo port collector Ciriaco Ugay, while Davao collector Erastus Sandino Austria, who was transferred to Cagayan de Oro (CDO), was replaced by Guillermo Pedro Francia, who also came from Ocom.
Limay port collector William Balayo was designated as Revenue Collection Monitoring Group (RCMG) Legal Service director. He was replaced by CDO collector Alexandra Lumontad.
Clark port collector John Simon was designated as acting director of Administration Office while Giovanni Imaysay from Ocom was designated as director of Trade Information and Risk Analysis Office, Post Clearance Audit Group.
Meanwhile, Lawyer Maria Lourdes Mangaoang, deputy district collector for passenger service of NAIA, returned to her former post as head of the bureau’s X-ray Inspection Project (XIP).
CDO Mindanao Container Terminal subport collector Marietta Zamoranos was designated as Subic deputy collector for assessment while NAIA Paircarco assessment composite chief Norsalem Raymond Mama-O replaced Mangaoang.
MICP deputy collector for administration Marlon Agaceta was appointed as Rubio’s chief of staff while Subic deputy collector for assessment Maita Acevedo was transferred at the Office of Collector in Manila.
The reshuffle, which was approved by Finance secretary Benjamin Diokno, was the first major and “tough” decision made by Rubio since he assumed post in February, replacing Yogi Filemon Ruiz.
Customs insiders said the shakeup is not a punishment but more of a change of strategy to further improve revenue collections.
The agency exceeded its revenue collection target last month.
According to Rubio, the agency’s total revenue collection for the first four months of 2023 reached P281.902 billion, surpassing the target collection of P265.220 billion by 6.29% or P16.682 billion.
This year’s collection is also 10.89% higher than the previous year’s collection of P254.226 billion for the same period.
The agency attributes its collection performance to its higher rate of assessment, which is mainly due to improved valuation of non-oil importation. The consistent increase in revenue collection is a positive development for the Philippine government, as it strives to generate revenue to fund its various programs and projects.
“We will continue to uphold our commitment to transparency, accountability, and service excellence as we strive to meet our revenue targets and contribute to the growth and development of our country,” said Commissioner Rubio. — Joel E. Zurbano
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