“Tanim-Bala” Scheme: A Growing Seed of Corruption

“What you reaped is what you sow.” A proverb so simple, its meaning is so perpetual. Since then, as it is to this day, the very essence of this proverb is still as relevant to this day than it was since its conception. As flowers do not turn into trees when planted; truly, what was planted is what does grow.

Anthony Taberna dismayed over tanim bala or laglag bala modus
Image Credits: chisms.net

As we all know that the same proverb is something to be taken figuratively than literal, we also know its meaning as something that reflects what others would call as causality (cause and effect) or karma – you earn good by doing good and you earn bad for doing bad.

However apparent in meaning, there are still some who are simply negligent of its relevance in a country ruled by law which would normally uphold what is essentially right. What we get are a bunch of conniving individuals who would stoop themselves so low as to trick other people for their money by planting false evidence of live bullets into people’s luggage and eventually extortion them as a result – introducing you the “Tanim-Bala” (Bullet-planting) scheme.

A Twisted Tale of Growing Grass of Corruption

To define the scheme as being a recent issue, is to say that the scheme itself is a grass which grew so fast for no apparent reason – bullshit, in every sense of the word. The issue of the “tanim-bala” scam is years’ long in the making whether we are aware of it or not and whose only reason it surfaced is due to the influx of people getting caught with live bullets in their luggage, falsely accused or otherwise, and the apparent media attention given to it as it should.

Who is to blame in all of this? That’s where things get complicated.

Although people are already smart enough to have noticed that the recent influx of events at Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) are not something which would be considered as normal, but an anomaly, early suspicions were placed towards criminal syndicates whose primary target are foreign individuals arriving to and from the airport, including balikbayans, as well as the overseas Filipino workers whose aim it is to milk them off of their hard-earned money from abroad and whose same group of criminals have an apparent grasp of the workings within the airport, personnel included.

As a testament to this “rightful” suspicion, there are already a few personnel who have been kicked out from their positions as a result of this imploding cases of scam – those who had direct contact to people alleged to have carried a live bullet in their luggage, however preposterous it is towards the victims at times themselves.

But just as when you narrowed down the problem within the bounds of the airport itself, other cases of the “tanim-bala” scheme also arise elsewhere within the metro, specifically on taxis, yet still in connection to the airport with overseas people as being the likely target.

The issue of the “tanim-bala” scheme is no simple and laughing matter which would likely persists unless acted upon now. As bad as a “plant” its corruption may have grown for the shame it is bringing as well as the mistrust among people within the airport it has caused, it is not necessarily indestructible; but one which will take a serious amount of effort to curb, if not eliminate altogether, both by the authorities within the airport along with the aid of the government without excluding the role of modern-day technology in the process.


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