MANILA, Philippines- Inihain ni Senador Risa Hontiveros ang isang panukalang batas na magpapataw ng parusang life imprisonment sa sinumang opisyal at empleado ng gobyerno na nakipagsabwatan sa agricultural smuggler na nagpapalumpo sa lokal na magsasaka.
Sinabi ni Hontiveros na layunin ng Senate Bill No. 2205 na amendahan ang ilang probisyon ng Republic Act No. 10845, o mas kilala bilang Anti-Agricultural Smuggling Act, nag awing kriminal ang sinumang opisyal at empleado na nakipagsabwatan sa large-scale agricultural smugglers.
“Since the law’s passage in 2016, even if there have been many reports of the seizure of smuggled products, there has been no prosecution of individuals, groups, or corporations under the law,” aniya.
“There has been no prosecution of government officials for facilitating and abetting acts of agricultural smuggling that amount to large-scale economic sabotage. As a result, smuggling activities continue with impunity,” giit pa ni Hontiveros.
Nakatakda sa panukala na kapag kumilos ang sinumang opisyal o empleado na payagan ang importasyon sa bansa nang walang kaukulang import permit ay idedeklarang economic sabotage.
“In the sugar fiasco that is still unfolding, for example, documented accounts show that tens of thousands of metric tons of sugar – a regulated commodity – were allowed into the country without a sugar order,” ani Hontiveros.
“The approval or issuance by a public employee or officer of any license, declaration, clearance, or permit, knowing that it is manifestly unlawful, inequitable, or irregular, will also be considered economic sabotage,” ayon sa panukala.
Nahaharap sa parusang life imprisonment at multang doble sa halaga ng fair value ng inismagel na produktong agrikultura kabilang ang buwis at iba pang bayarin kasama ang interes ang ipapataw sa lumabag.
Itinakda sa loob ng 20 taon ang prescription period o panahon sa pagsasampa ng kaso ang panukala.
“Agricultural smuggling is costing the government billions of pesos a year in lost revenues. The smuggling of regulated agricultural commodities has also led to high prices for consumers, the violation of our competition laws, and most importantly, the further decline of our domestic agricultural sector,” ayon kay Hontiveros sa explanatory note.
“It is time to hold to account government officials who allow smuggling to persist unfettered,” aniya. Ernie Reyes