More warehouses suspected of hoarding sugar supply will be inspected in the coming days, Malacañang said.
Press Secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles said Thursday, Aug. 18, that aside from the warehouses recently inspected by the Bureau of Customs (BOC), more storage facilities will be checked in the coming days.
“[W]e can confirm that, yes, there is another one today and possibly more in the coming days,” Angeles said during a press briefing.
Two warehouses in Bulacan and one in Pampanga were separately raided by Customs agents on Wednesday night to Thursday afternoon.
Around 30,000 sacks of different kinds of sugar were found in the warehouse owned by a certain Victor Chua, who claimed that the sugar stock was “locally purchased.”
Another stock of sugar estimated to be 42,733 sacks were also found in another warehouse owned by Chua.
Both warehouses are located in San Jose del Monte, Bulacan. The facilities were inspected by the Customs on late Wednesday evening and Thursday afternoon.
On Thursday morning, a warehouse in Pampanga filled with thousands of sacks of sugar was also uncovered by the Customs.
The Customs alleged that the sugar found in the Pampanga warehouse were imported from Thailand.
According to the Palace, the BOC is now looking into reports that the sugar found in Pampanga were smuggled and are only repacked and sold as local sugar— a modus indicated by old and undisposed Thailand sugar sacks in the warehouse premises.
“The initial report reaching the BOC concluded that the sacks of sugar ‘appeared old and dusty, evidenced of its prolonged storage/hoarding (presumably) to dictate the market prices of sugar’,” Malacañang said.
The series of warehouse inspections was made on orders from Executive Secretary Victor Rodriguez, acting on President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.’s order for the BOC to check on the inventory of imported agricultural products in all customs bonded warehouses with the aim of finding out if there is hoarding of sugar.