Customs officials have convinced the Court of Appeals (CA) to enforce in the meantime an order prohibiting the re-exportation of used clothing locally referred to as “ukay-ukay.”
The Bureau of Customs (BoC) secured a temporary relief from the appellate court’s Special Seventh Division, in a resolution dated December 9, 2016, issued a 60-day temporary restraining order preventing the implementation of Manila Regional Trial Court Branch 11 orders dated September 30, 2015 and November 10, 2015 which enjoined the enforcement of Customs Tariff Decision (CTD) Circular No. 01-2015 dated July 1, 2015.
The Customs circular revoked all the rulings, decisions and practices allowing the conditional release of imported used clothing in lieu of the strict implementation of Republic Act (RA) 4653 and concerns the importation of Coam Philippines Incorporated and Globaltex Impex Inc. of used clothing. The two companies earlier had sought relief from the Manila regional trial court (RTC).
“Viewed from the foregoing circumstances, and to avoid grave and irreparable injury which would result in the petitioner pending disposition of the instant petition, and likewise so as not to render the outcome of the petition moot and academic, let a Temporary Restraining Order ISSUE, effective for sixty (60) days from service to the respondents, enjoining the Regional Trial Court, Branch 11, Manila, from the implementation of the assailed Orders dated 30 September 2015 and 10 November 2015,” the appellate court stated in its resolution.
The CA’s resolution was penned by Associate Justice Elihu Ybanez and was concurred in by Associate Justices Danton Bueser and Victoria Isabel Paredes.
The BoC argued in its petition before the CA that the lower court ignored the State’s policy of safeguarding the public health by prohibiting the importation of used clothing as enshrined in RA 4653 and implemented by CTD Circular No. 01-2015.
“In effect, the respondent Judge (Judge Cicero Jurado) placed private respondents’ rights on the pedestal to the detriment of the general welfare of the public in violation of the doctrine that “private rights must yield when they come in conflict with this public policy and common interest,” the BoC said.