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Container yard operator to bring x-ray machine case to Lapeña

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PORT-CRANES-CUSTOMS
Cranes are seen at the Port of Manila in this 2011 file photo. -- BW FILE PHOTO

AQUARIUS CONTAINER YARD (ACY), owned by businessman Rodolfo C. Reta, will appeal the reopening of its designated examination area (DEA) in Davao City to Customs Commissioner Isidro S. Lapeña as the Bureau of Customs (BoC)-Davao head, Erastus Sandino B. Austria, insists on transferring the DEA’s x-ray machine. “As of now our move is to deal with the top brass… in as much as the collector here (Mr. Austria) would not cooperate,” said Manuel P. Quibod, Mr. Reta’s lead counsel. The DEA, which is located inside the ACY with an x-ray machine and other facilities, was closed down by BoC in 2010. Mr. Austria, in a recent press conference, asserted that the agreement between Mr. Reta and BoC has already been revoked and this has been confirmed by the Office of the Solicitor General. Mr. Austria is of the position that ACY’s x-ray machine should be transferred to a BoC site. On the other hand, Mr. Quibod said, “What he (Mr. Austria) wants is to take the x-ray out, which is nonnegotiable for us.” Under the 2009 agreement between Mr. Reta and the BoC, the use of the P250-million x-ray machine purchased by the former would be “free of charge” to the government, while Mr. Reta would exclusively handle trucking services inside the DEA. — Maya M. Padillo