No pay, no gain

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However well-intentioned, the country is not ready for an “honesty store.” Such unattended self-service store where customers themselves get their change from a cash box is bound to be abused.

This weekend, the Manila Police District (MPD) cooperative’s “honesty store” closed shop after six months of losing money to dishonest buyers, who did not pay the right amount for the food items they bought and, worse, took more change than they were supposed to get.

MPD Finest Brotherhood Cooperative general manager Ester Tan said the cash box lost from P500 to P1,000 a month and one customer took P15,000 in August. Footage of a CCTV camera in the MPD headquarters lobby where the store is located showed customers taking money though they were never identified and no one ran after them. The one who took the P15,000 was identified, but the coop did not file charges.

Former MPD director Chief Supt. Rolando Anduyan, who suggested the establishment of the store last year, may be shame-faced that it did not profit. Worse, it lost money and tolerated thievery. It was, to the contrary, a “dishonesty store.”

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