BOC seizes P50-M worth of smuggled goods in Davao City

Marje Pelayo   •   May 25, 2018   •   5837


Smuggled boxes of lotions and bundles of used clothing (ukay-ukay) seized by Customs


DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Four different shipments loaded with misdeclared items were seized by operatives of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) in Sasa Wharf, Davao City.

This was revealed by Davao City Customs District Collector Romalino Valdez on Friday, May 25, saying the shipments contained smuggled items such as onions, magic sugar, candies, mosquito coils and used clothing.

Two shipments were sent from China while the other two were shipped from Indonesia and the United States. All shipments were valued to a total of P50 million.

According to Valdez, the items in one container were declared as plastic plates under the consignee Janrev Enterprises. When opened, the van contained 401 boxes of Snow Bear candies; 869 boxes of mosquito coils; and about 6,300 sacks of apples and onions shipped by a company named Bizreal Trading International.

“Itong Snowbear candies na ito nang tiningnan ng mga (These Snowbear candies according to) examiners were made in Pasig City but the container came from China. So hindi natin alam bakit ganoon ang ikot nila (We don’t know why the arrangement was such). But still, it wasn’t declared. Ang mahirap dito hindi lang fake baka iba pa ang laman (The problem is: not only is it fake, it may even contain something else). We are requesting PDEA to have it examined,” said Valdez.

Meanwhile, other shipments sent by Mahmud Enterprises and Kobesean Trading contained misdeclared used clothing or “ukay-ukay,” 275 boxes of magic sugar and 115 boxes of lotions.

All containers passed and checked through x-ray machine at Davao International Container Terminal.

This recent seizure prompted the BOC to further intensify its monitoring of imported items especially agricultural products that are commonly being smuggled into the country.

“I will continue to be very strong in addressing itong (these) smuggling activities na ito. There’s so many losses in the revenue that is due to the government because of under-declaration or misdeclaration,” said Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña.

Authorities are further investigating to identify the people behind the illegal shipments who will face multiple charges for violation of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act and Republic Act (RA) 4653 which prohibits the commercial importation of textile articles such as used clothing and rags. — Marisol Montaño / Marje Pelayo

Air travelers to Davao City may get free COVID-19 testing starting June 29 – Sara Duterte

Robie de Guzman   •   June 26, 2020

Passengers arriving at the Francisco Bangoy International Airport may avail of free and voluntary testing novel for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) starting June 29, the Davao City government said.

In a statement, the city government said that all air passengers who arrived in Davao City on June 8, 2020, whether experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 or asymptomatic, can also avail of the testing.

Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio said the free reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing for air passengers is one of the city government’s efforts to find carriers of coronavirus and curb the spread of the viral disease in Davao  City.

“Isa pa ni sa atoang mga pamaagi nga mangita og mga pasyente. Lahi pa ni sa mga ginabuhat nato sa atoang contact-tracing, sa atoang case-finding dinha sa mga communities,” Duterte-Carpio said.

(This is one of our ways in finding patients, apart from the contact-tracing and case-finding in our communities.)

“So, duna tay budget sa atoang Bayanihan Grant nga napasa atong April and atoang gamiton ni para sa katong voluntary ang free testing for passengers who arrived by airplane beginning June 8 until the present,” she added.

(We have a budget from our Bayanihan Grant that was passed last April, and we will use it for the voluntary and free testing for passengers who arrived by airplane beginning June 8 until the present.)

Around 1,000 RT-PCR testing kits are ready for the free and voluntary testing for passengers who arrived in Davao City from June 8, 2020, to the present.

“Duna tay listahan, but sa pagka karon nangita lang ta og volunteers. Asymptomatic or symptomatic – meaning naa moy ubo, naa moy sip-on o wala, gikaluntura mo or wala, pwede mo magpa libreng testing sugod sa Monday,” she said.

(We have a list but for now we are looking for volunteers. Asymptomatic or symptomatic – meaning if you have cough, colds, or fever, or even if you don’t have these, you may avail of the free testing starting on Monday.)

Before the start date, the city government said it will release the full details on how to avail of the free testing.

Meantime, air travel passengers may reach out to the COVID-19 Task Force Operation Center for the details on how they can avail of the free testing.

Those interested in the initiative may contact Davao City’s COVID-19 OpCen through 0917 508 6548 for Globe users; 0919 071 1111 for Smart users; or, dial (082) 244-0181 for information.

Sara Duterte reminds OFWs, locally-stranded individuals returning to Davao to complete 14-day quarantine

Robie de Guzman   •   June 24, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte has reminded overseas Filipino workers (OFW) and locally-stranded individuals (LSI) returning to the city to comply with the mandatory 14-day quarantine and for their families to keep physical distance to avoid getting infected with novel coronavirus disease.

“Mag-remind ta sa atong mga kaigsuonang Dabawenyo nga kung duna moy kauban sa balay or member of your household or silingan nga bag-ong abot nga gikan sa ubang lugar, make sure nga dili mo moduol sa ilaha and make sure nga mag comply sila sa 14-day quarantine,” Duterte said in an interview over the Davao City Disaster Radio on Monday.

(We are reminding our fellow Dabawenyos if they have a household member or neighbor coming from other areas, make sure you don’t come near them or make sure they comply with the 14-day quarantine.)

Mayor Sara said the reminder is for all families with returning OFWs and LSIs regardless if members are either asymptomatic or experiencing symptoms of the coronavirus disease.

Davao City Health Office Head Dr. Josephine Villafuerte also echoed Mayor Sara’s statement, stressing that the 14-day quarantine for returning residents is required and must be followed.

Davao City has been receiving OFWs and LSIs in the past weeks via sweeper flights facilitated by government agencies.

Before boarding the plane, these OFWs and LSIs undergo rapid diagnostic tests (RDT), and those who turn out positive in the test are not be allowed to board the flight.

Upon arrival in Davao City, returning residents also undergo strict health screening conducted by the CHO. If they fail in the screening, they are referred to the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) for swabbing.

“They must fill out the health declaration form, undergo thermal scanning and symptom screening if they have a fever, cough, and cold. If they fail the health screening, they will be referred to SPMC for swabbing then for isolation or admission,” Villafuerte said in a statement.

Those who will not be placed in an isolation facility are required to undergo a 14-day home quarantine. They are directed to contact their District Health Office or the SPMC in case symptoms appear within 14 days.

As of June 20, the city government said it has assisted 5,825 inbound Davao City individuals while 4,512 outbound Davao City via land, air, and sea.

Of these numbers, 18 returning OFWs and two LSIs have tested positive for Covid-19.

Davao City gov’t files raps against over 200 quarantine violators

Robie de Guzman   •   June 10, 2020

The government of Davao City has filed charges against more than 200 individuals who allegedly violated the protocols of the community quarantine.

According to Angel Sumagaysay, head of the city’s Public Safety and Security Command Center, 90 complaints have been filed against 277 persons accused of defying rules on curfew, social gathering, and liquor ban.

Sumagaysay added that 145 charges have also been lodged out of the 329 apprehensions for violations on the use of food and medicine pass.

“Other cases are yet to be filed as these will be done through regular filing while other apprehended suspects are minors,” he said in a statement.

“We just have to follow the protocols, especially on the social distancing and wearing of mask,” he added.

Sumagaysay stressed that protocols are being strictly implemented to prevent the further spread of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

“We are commending the security sector, particularly the Davao City Police Office for continued implementation of GCQ guidelines. We hope that Dabawenyos would cooperate and adhere to the guidelines (because) after all, this is for the good of our community,” he said.

Davao City has recorded a total of 321 coronavirus infections with 192 recoveries and 30 deaths. The city currently has 99 active cases.


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