Customs donates 5,000 contraband smart phones to DepEd

Published January 30, 2021, 12:19 PM

by Ellson Quismorio & Ariel Fernandez

Here’s a great use for confiscated contraband smart phones: hand them over to the Department of Education (DepEd) to help facilitate online classes.

A total of 5,038 devices composed of Oppo A9 and A31 mobile phones, as well as Huawei Mate mobile devices were donated by the Bureau of Customs (BoC) to DepEd Friday, the Manila Bulletin learned from BoC.

The gadgets were among the “hot goods” seized at the Port of Clark. Authorities found them as they were being transported out of Clark Freeport Zone.

The turn-over of the online learning tools took place at the BoC Situation Room in Manila. It was attended by DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones and BoC Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero, with the virtual presence of Department of Finance (DoF) Secretary Carlos Dominguez.

Also in attendance were the Bureau’s deputy Commissioners and representatives of the Port of Clark headed District Collector Ruby Claudia M. Alameda.

The donation was approved by Dominguez by virtue of the provisions of Republic Act (RA) 10863, also known as the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act or CMTA. It is expected to benefit students affected by the COVID-19 pandemic by allowing better implementation of DepEd’s online learning program.

In her remarks, Secretary Briones thanked the Customs Bureau and the Department of Finance for their continuing support to DepEd in furthering quality education. Secretary Dominguez for his part commended the men and women of the BOC for their unrelenting efforts to perform their functions  as well as for their initiatives to collaborate with other agencies to better serve the Filipinos.