The Bureau of Immigration’s reshuffle of its airport personnel in the wake of a bribery racket targeting Chinese entering the Philippines is a step in the right direction, but may not quite be enough, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said Friday.
Lacson, in a statement, said the move could meet limited success if it does not eradicate greed and corruption among its personnel.
“While the Bureau of Immigration’s reshuffle of its airport personnel may be a step in the right direction, it will have little success if it does not eradicate greed and corruption,” he said.
He noted the huge payoffs involved in the racket had been going on for quite some time, and is not because of low pay or lack of overtime benefits as claimed by some BI personnel earlier.
Rather, he said the cause is “greed and corrupt attitudes of government workers who are clothed with the power and authority that go with their positions.”
“Suspension or termination of overtime pay and non-inclusion in the salary hike of other government employees should never be a reason for corrupt BI personnel to justify the illegal acts they commit to augment their income. That is crap, and I am not buying it,” he added.
Lacson recalled that when he entered the government service in 1971, he was aware of the limitations and even sacrifices that go with being in public service.
“Noong pumasok kami bilang mga kawani ng gobyerno, alam naman namin ang mga limitations, even sacrifices, as well as the benefits that go with being in public service. But even the so-called benefits are governed by rules and regulations, and should not put us above our counterparts in the private sector,” he said.