Bureau of Customs Officer Explains Why They Open Balikbayan Boxes
The Bureau of Customs is wrapped with different controversies over the years, the most recent was the pilferage of items inside balikbayan boxes.
Balikbayan boxes are those boxes sent by our Overseas Filipino Workers from different parts of the world. These boxes are not just full of imported things but are also the product of blood and sweat by our fellow kababayans for their beloved families in the Philippines.
So why are these Bureau of Customs Officials opening balikbayan boxes for their so-called ‘security check’?
A certain Jhun Cerdena posted a video online that drew the attention of the public. Based on the video, Cerdena is a member of the Bureau of Customs, responsible in checking the items inside the box. They open balikbayan boxes to check if there are illegal items inside.
In the first box that they opened, they removed a flammable item and a pack of batteries. According to Cerdena, it is prohibited to transport these items for the safety of everyone. In the second box, Cerdena and his team opened a huge extra-large balikbayan box, weighing approximately 100 kilos.
The content of the box are clothes, shoes and lots of lotions, toothpaste and soaps. There are limit to these items and the Bureau of Customs are very particular with it. The allowable quantity of lotions are limited to 2 kilograms only. Other allowed quantity of personal products are as follows;
- Perfumes – 5 Pieces
- Lipstick – 10 Pieces
- Shampoo – 2 Kilograms
- Bar Soap – 2 Kilograms
- Assorted Cosmetics – 1 Kilogram
- Toys – 10 pieces
- Childcare Articles – 5 Kilograms
- Household Hazardous Substances – 5 Kilograms
According to Cerdena, they are not opening these boxes for nothing. They are actually inspecting the items inside the box.
Unfortunately, not everyone is pleased with what the BOC officer did. Netizens flooded negative comments on the video. Some felt pity to the OFW who sent the box and their families who were expecting the contents of the box.
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Posted by Jhun Cerdena on Saturday, April 22, 2017
Currently, there are 17,867 shares and 13,000 comments on the said video.