Levenstone new Acting Director Customs Dept.

Levenstone new Acting  Director Customs Dept.

From left: Acting Director of Customs and Director of Immigration and Border Protection Services Jocelyn Levenstone; Justice Minister Anna Richardson and Secretary General, Florence Marlin.

PHILIPSBURG--Head of the Immigration and Border Protection Services Jocelyn Levenstone has been appointed as the Acting Director of the Customs Department.

He will hold both positions. Justice Minister Anna Richardson made the announcement in a press release issued on Sunday.

According to the release, on Friday, January 26, Richardson met with Customs Officers at the Immigration Department in Philipsburg to zero in on the ongoing concerns regarding the current Head of Customs, Franklin Bernadina.

In the presence of the ABVO Union and the Secretary General, Richardson indicated that by Ministerial Decree, Levenstone will assume dual responsibilities as Head of the Immigration and Border Protection Services and now as Acting Director of the Customs Department.

According to the release, this decision follows grievances expressed by Customs officers in a letter dated in December 2023, regarding the outgoing Director, Franklin Bernadina and previous complaints. Bernadina has since officially submitted his resignation to the Minister of Justice and those sentiments were divulged during the meeting. Bernadina served as the Director of Customs from March 1, 2022.

“As Minister of Justice, I firmly believe in the synergy between border protection agencies, harmonising the control of both product imports and traveller movements. The pilot approach of integrating Customs and Immigration under the capable leadership of Acting Director Jocelyn Levenstone marks a pivotal step towards achieving seamless operations and positive outcomes. Together, we shall ensure the integrity of our borders while facilitating the smooth flow of goods and people, functioning by a spirit of collaboration and efficiency,” Richardson said.

Expressing gratitude for the decision on the one year commitment of the new appointment, Levenstone pledged to rebuild the morale of Customs Officers. His initial focus will be on addressing concerns outlined in the grievance letter, emphasising clarity on the employee’s function book and comprehensive evaluations.

“I'll work closely with the ABVO Union to prevent further issues or delays for the Customs department. We must realign to focus on the work at hand without distractions,” conveyed Levenstone.

The release said that ABVO President, Sharlon Catalina, affirmed the union's support and cooperation with the Customs Department’s management under the leadership of the temporary Acting Director. The collective commitment aims to foster a positive and efficient working environment within the Customs Department.

The Daily Herald

Copyright © 2020 All copyrights on articles and/or content of The Caribbean Herald N.V. dba The Daily Herald are reserved.

Without permission of The Daily Herald no copyrighted content may be used by anyone.

Comodo SSL

Hosted by

© 2024 The Daily Herald. All Rights Reserved.