President Rodrigo Duterte. ( file photo)

DAVAO CITY, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte told officials and employees of one of the government agencies embroiled in corruption to live simply.

“Live simply. Do not crave for things which you cannot afford. Do not dream of things which are beyond your reach. You’ll be tempted,” Duterte told the crowd during the 115th anniversary of the BOC where he gave a speech.

Duterte also thanked the agency for performing well and contributing to the revenue collection of the country.

“The money collected by the BOC forms a significant chunk of government earnings. We have to be relentless in our drive to maintain credible, efficient and effective customs bureau,” he said.

In his opening speech, Atty. Atty. Edward James Dy Buco, deputy commissioner of the Assessment and Operations Coordinating Group of the BOC  said the office surpassed their target for the last three months.

“For calendar year 2016 the second semester performance of P206.454 billion is eight percent higher than ​fir​st semester performance of P190.551 billion,” Buco said.

He said during the last six months they were able to exceed their target twice.

In November last year, Buco said they got 116 percent of their target; 101 percent for December 2016 and 101 percent for January this year.

Buco also cited that in the previous years since 2009, the agency has not reached 100 percent of its target.

He said in 2009, the BOC performed poorly with only 81 percent performance. In 2010, the performance climbed to 92 percent, 83 percent in 2011, 84 percent in 2012, 90 percent in 2013, 90 percent in 2014 and 84 percent in 2015.

The low performance rate was improved significantly with 97 percent by 2016.

He said they are positive that this year’s target will be achieved.

Duterte said BOC’s performance last November 2016 “was an eye-opener.”

“It was the first time that the government was truly able to exceed collection targets since December 2014,” he said.

Duterte said he hopes the BOC will no longer be tagged as among the most corrupt agencies in the coming year.

He also urged the officials and employees to implement reforms and crackdown on corruption.

Aside from revenue collection, Buco also said the agency excelled in its anti-illegal and anti-smuggling campaign. It said they collected P1.266 billion from the anti-illegal drug campaign and P2.206 billion worth of smuggled goods seized from August 2016 until January 2017.(

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