Crime · everyday life · Philippines · politics · thoughts

35 is not 1000 —unless you’re from the Customs

This is how corrupt our Bureau of CUSTOMS is.

Today, I asked my brother OJ to pass by the Post office in Pasay so he can get the two books my mom had sent us from Michigan. Early this week, I received a Claim slip that said I was only to show my ID as addressee and pay an amount of P35.00 for the delivery/claim of the books. I gave OJ my passport and I asked him to sign the claim slip as my representative since I won’t be able to claim the books today because of work.

To my surprise, as soon as OJ got there, he was being asked to pay P1,000 pesos before he could claim the books. He texted me and I was surprised myself. What 1,000? Didn’t the claim slip say it was only P35? I told him to ask again for the process but I already knew some form of corruption was going on.

I stormed inside our office and ranted about how corrupt the Customs is. Fortunately, my officemate and big sister Ate Malu, who used to be the Executive Assistant of Sec. Teves of the Department of Finance, knew people who could help us. She was so quick that it hasn’t been a minute since I told her about the problem and she was already on the phone with her friend. Her friend knew someone from the Customs in Pasay, “ang kilabot”, so it was arranged that her contact would call my brother and also the officers harassing OJ about the books. They would help us out.

As I type this, I was told the problem has been solved —at least, communication has been made between OJ and my officemate’s contact who already called OJ and I am praying he would get the books, because it would be so sad to have OJ come home all the way from Baguio just to get his books, and have him experience something so disgusting like this. I told OJ to not get fidgety and rush to bargaining with the officer for a discount because that’s like haggling with corruption. WE NEVER LET CORRUPTION ABUSE US.

Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still and know that I am God.” I was also a bit shaken up. I think what OJ And I need to do now is to just be still, not do anything but pray and hope that Ate Malu’s contact will be able to help us out.

Is this the kind of officials we have today? I abhor them, I really do. I hate how corruption affects everyone and victimizes the very helpless. My brother did not go there carrying 1,000 because he knew he only had to pay 35. P35 pesos WILL NEVER BE 1,000 pesos —unless we are bobo in Math. And my brother was from Manila Science, currently studying in UP, and his favourite subject in the world happens to be Math —35 will never be 1000 for him. The numbers just don’t make sense.

This corruption —-what can we do about it? It makes me SICK.

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6 thoughts on “35 is not 1000 —unless you’re from the Customs

  1. Way to go sis! don’t let them control you. Fight corruption! some people will just surrender and give them the 1000… not just the customs… actually most filipinoes are now corrupt not just the government @@

  2. Hi Chette: I cannot STOMACH corruption. I just cannot accept it, no matter how small it may be. If we can give in to the “small” corruptions, how much more the big ones? I really, really pray that God will help us. Ayokong magbayad, and I pray God will honor this because i know He is just and is also after righteousness and justice. So yes, I will not pay 1,000, if I can help it.

  3. did your mom write “gift” on the package? was the amount she declared exceeded the non-taxable limit? what are those books, anyway? are they text books? text books aren’t supposed to be taxed, but i could be mistaken. next time, she can send them in a balikbayan box, which, as far as i know, isn’t subjected to custom inspection.

  4. They were declared gifts. what’s worse: they opened the parcel and not in front of us. That’s invasion of privacy!

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