Senator Sonny Angara has said he would be willing to exempt the Bureau of Customs (BOC) from the government’s pay cap in a bid to counter widespread corruption.
“By exempting the BOC from the government’s salary cap, we could provide better pay for our Customs officials that would allow us to hire more competent employees and reward honest officials,” he said on Wednesday.
“But before we make any increase in their pay scale, there should be improved qualification and performance benchmarks in place to further professionalise its ranks,” he added.
Senator Angara also said he supported the idea that the Bureau of Internal Revenue would be willing to exempt the Salary Standardization Law, “As long as it entails higher responsibility and accountability from the biggest revenue agency.”
The senator likewise urged the BOC to implement Republic Act 9335 or the Lateral Attrition Law, which provides for a system of reward and punishment for Customs officials and employees depending on their performance.
Under the law, officials and personnel of government collection agencies, such as the BIR and BOC, may receive financial incentives for surpassing collection targets but may be relieved or dismissed from their post for failing to meet goals.