BAGUIO CITY – A 30-year old taxi driver from Rosario, La Union had once again proven that honesty is the best policy after he was offered a guaranteed job in Australia when he returned the luggage of an Australian national that the latter left in his taxi several days ago.
Reggie Cabutotan, 30, married, and a taxi driver from Rosario, La Union, did not expect that his simple act of returning the luggage to its owner will eventually change the living condition of his family once he will be able to complete his training in the city.
“I was surprised to receive information from my operator that I have to be present in city hall early Monday morning. I did not expect that I will receive the surprise of my life from what I think was a simple thing I did in returning the luggage of my Australian passenger,” Cabutotan, a taxi driver in the city for over 6 years now, stressed.
Cabutotan, who is married with four young children, relies on driving a taxi as his source of livelihood and that he comes to the city every other day to drive the taxi owned by an overseas Filipino worker from Victoria Village barangay.
Trent Shields, an Australian bachelor businessman, handed over to Cabutotan a certificate granting him a P220,000 6-month scholarship in a local training academy based in Kalye Uno and if he successfully hurdles this, can guarantee him a job in a Coder Factory in Australia with a starting salary of P1.7 million monthly.
Shields claimed that in the early morning of January 17, 2017, he boarded Cabutotan’s taxi from Navy Base bound for Kalye Uno, a co-working place in the city located along 1st Road Quezon Hill.
He narrated that he immediately alighted from the taxi after paying his fare without taking his things with him. While he was in the co-working place, he noticed that his luggage was not with him prompting him and his colleagues to report the matter to the nearest police station.
On his part, Cabutotan claimed he decided to look for a place to urinate in an uninhabited area along the road and when he boarded back his Dustin Brand taxi, he noticed the luggage inside his vehicle, thus, he immediately proceeded to the place where the Australian national dropped.
Upon arrival in Kalye Uno, Shields and his companions were about to go to the nearest police station when they were met by a smiling Cabutotan who was holding the left luggage.
Shields claimed the items that he left inside Cabutotan’s taxi included his passport, working gadgets and pertinent documents he needs for his transactions in the country.
“The scholarship granted to the taxi driver is a gesture of my gratitude to Cabutotan for the big thing that he has done in returning my valuable luggage,” Shields added.
He said the scholarship will involve business entrepreneurship combined with software development training for 6 months that will allow Cabutotan to work with his Coder Factory in Sydney, Australia once he will be able to successfully complete the prescribed course.
Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan commended the act of Cabutotan as heroic for being honest because this will sustain the city’s identity as a home of honest taxi drivers.
“We are proud of Cabutotan’s heroic act because it again proves that we are able to inculcate in the minds of our tourism frontliners the importance of being honest as a life principle which when used in their work enhances the city’s good image,” Domogan stressed.
Domogan encouraged public utility vehicle drivers in the city to emulate the good deed of Cabutotan because it would be an added factor in sustaining the influx of visitors that will directly benefit their source of livelihood. /By Dexter A. See#