By Joseph Almer Pedrajas
Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso issued a stern warning on Monday against stall owners of Recto Avenue’s infamous diploma mill and manufacturer of fake documents and licenses, including IDs and receipts that he would get rid of them if they continue with their nefarious trade.
“Tumigil kayo dyan sa Recto sa kaka-imprenta ng resibo ng Lungsod ng Maynila [Those in Recto should stop printing fake Manila government receipts],” he said during Monday’s flag ceremony, “Hindi na kayo natuwa na peke-en n’yo ang senior citizen ID [identification card]. ‘Di na kayo natuwa na peke-en nyo ang PWD [persons with disability] ID? [Have you no shame to forge senior citizen and PWD IDs?]”
“Pakatandaan ninyo. Uubusin ko kayo dyan [Remember that I will rid you all],” he added.
Moreno was vexed after finding out that even official local government receipts are being illegally produced in the area.
“Pati ngayon, resibo ng gobyerno ng Maynila, ini-emprenta nyo na [You’re forging even the local government’s receipts],” he said.
“Galit na galit kayo sa magnanakaw sa gobyerno, eh ‘yung mga magnanakaw sa gobyerno, namomorsyento lang. Kayo, kinukuha nyo na buong kaban [You are angry at the corrupt government employees. But you are getting money intended for the city coffers],” he added.
Aside from IDs and government receipts, Moreno said, several stalls are also producing and printing fake school diplomas, driver’s licenses, and National Bureau of Investigation [NBI] clearances.
“Sino gusto maging doctor? Bibigyan ko kayo diploma sa ‘Recto University’ [Who wants to be a doctor? I will give you a diploma from ‘Recto University’]” he asked, “Sino gusto NBI clearance, kahit walang NBI clerance? [Who wants an NBI clearance even if you don’t have one?]”
“Mga bagay na kinibit balikat, hinuhuli na natin [We are now running against those were left untouched before],” he said, “Kayo na nagi-imprenta, sobra na ang kasakiman nyo. Sagad hanggang buto. Nilalahat na [You are all greedy of everything].”
The discovery led the city mayor to remind various local government’s offices to “inspect well” the receipts that they are receiving.
“Kaya ako’y nananawagan sa city treasure officer [I’m calling on], Business Permit and Licensing Office, sa assessor, sa license division. Siyasatin nyo mismo yung resibong binibigay [Inspect the receipts being given to you],” he said.
“Nandyan ang buhay ng pamahalaang lungsod [The life of the local government is in there],” he added.
Moreno also called on barangay officials to rid the area of illegal activities.
“Humanda kayo chairman, kayong mga opisyal dyan [Officials there should be prepared],” he warned, ‘Yang pananatili nyan, ibig sabihin, pagpayag ninyo [Their continuous presence is your consent].”
In November, at least six persons reportedly operating an office along Recto Ave. were arrested by Manila Police District’s Special Mayor’s Reaction Team in an entrapment operation for allegedly producing forged identification cards for PWDs and senior citizens.
The operation, which stemmed from a complaint that several persons were using fake IDs to claim financial assistance, led to the confiscation of various forged documents, including IDs, land titles, diplomas, and electricity bills, among others.