Monday, February 27, 2012

NBI Clearance at Robinsons Metro East : Tormenting The Average Juans.

This is an experience I would like to share with everyone when I applied for an NBI Clearance at Robinsons Metro East, Marcos Hi-way this February 2012.

Note: It's actually supposed to be just renewing since I already went through the rigorous process of application years back but with NBI's software being reset and their files back to zero, we have to do it all over again.

It's not a secret that here in the Philippines, the government's service to the people is SLOW and BIASED. But the NBI Clearance Center at Robinsons Metro East folks, takes the cake. Well, along the way you'll realize that it is not all their fault but they should be ashamed that they just sit there and watch the system torment the average Juans considering that they are public servants. My God, I hope some powerful politician reads this and gets a move on.
  • The line at Robinsons Metro East starts at 1 AM in the morning. Hindi ito approved ng NBI office though, hindi ko din alam sino ang nasimula nito basta 7 am ang advised time nila para pumila. People just show up at 1 am in their hopes to be the first in line. I arrived at around 2 am. Pagdating ko I swear that we were less than 50 people. But noong kuhanan na ng number, I was the 110th.
  • Hindi nila kami kaagad binigyan ng number so, I was surprised nun maguumaga na, ang dami nang tao ahead of me. There was this guy na malaki ang tiyan, wearing no uniform or ID who kept on "organizing" the line. I discovered later on that he is a fixer who offered 300 pesos to the people behind to be put ahead of the others or para mauna. Ang problema naman sa ating mga Pilipino, pinapatulan natin, lamangan. 
  • From 2 am, with no decent seat, I had to sleep on the sidewalk in a very difficult position up until 7 am to wait to be allowed to go upstairs where the NBI office is. So the line was right in front of the mall itself. 
  • By 4 am the line was lagpas na ng Sta. Lucia (the tail pointing to Ligaya direction)
  • When we were sent upstairs, there was a head count conducted by the security personnel to make sure, 500 lang ang aakyat. I imagined that sucked for the 501st person who arrived and the people behind him. Naawa ako sakanila since they got up early too and the lining situation is not exactly comfortable, not even DECENT or HUMANE
  • When we were lined up in the 5th floor Cinema Level Parking lot near the entrance of the NBI Clearance Center, it took another 2 hours before they sent us in. That is 7 hours of lining up for me. And I already felt filthy because I had to sit on the sidewalk and now on the dirty parking lot floor. 
  • The guards there were so BASTOS too. Every time they announce something they talk to us in such a belittling annoyed tone as if we were all so stupid for them. I will not quote even if I want to but to be fair, I will just leave it since the guards will not be able to defend themselves here. But they ought to be ashamed of themselves.
  • Only by past 7 am, did they finally give us a machine printed stub with a number. Mine was 110.
  • There is this one lady who arrived at 7:30, she was pregnant. She asked me where the end of the line was and I explained to her that the line starts at 1 am and the center will only accomodate up to 500 and by then, some people were already sent home. To my surprise, the guard put her first in the line. I was pretty pissed off coz the lady in front of me was also pregnant. And she had to line up along with the rest of us since earlier than 2am, with her condition under that outrageous 'accommodation'. But really, I understand that pregnant women and senior citizens must be prioritized. I'm just pissed for the lady in front of me.
  • By 9 am I was already inside the mall, sitting on the cold floor, filling up the application form.Sumakit talaga tiyan ko dun kasi ang lamig ng sahig ramdam na ramdam ng katawan ko. I got sick after that. 
  • It took another hour an a half before I could get into STEP 1: PAYMENT. It should have been a breeze once you get into STEP 1 but since some of the NBI personnel are still not there, parang dalawa palang sila noon, the rest of us were sent back to line up for STEP 2: ENCODING.
  • The waiting period to STEP 2 was a nightmare. I was accommodated, 1:30 PM na. I was so exhausted, sleepy and hungry and MAD.
  • The encoders there were supposed to be more than just one but for some reason, isa lang ang nageencode. And the encoder took 8 minutes or more per person, yep, I timed it. He was typing using his index fingers and I could hear the keyboard taps from afar. 'nuff said you know where this is going.
  • The transition from STEP 2 to STEP 3: BIOMETRICS  to STEP 4: RELEASING was a breeze though, pagkatapos mo sa STEP 2 dire diretso ka na lang.
  • I was finally finished by 2:30 pm, cold, hungry, tired and SICK. It was a whopping 12 hours and 30 minutes just to claim a government issued form.
I would just want to make it clear that I did not write this to express hatred towards the NBI Clearance Center, although I am really mad. This is to rebuke the collective faults of the fixers who take advantage of the system to encourage unjust processing for personal gain, the people kasi pinapatulan nila ang fixers and whoever said line up there at 1 AM, the guards who have no sense of respect for the people, and the Clearance Center because I am sure this has been going on for quite some time and no one does something about it!

This is me, exercising my freedom of speech. Ang kaso kasi sa mga tao, dahil once lang sila kukuha ng NBI for a long time, no one dares na tutukan ito because it won't help them anymore. Sino pang magsasalita kung hindi tayo? Kawawa naman yung mga susunod saating kumuha.

PS. I would post pictures unfortunately wala akong dalang camera coz I was refraining from bringing valuables given that I expected to be exposed in a dangerous stance along the walks of Marcos Hi-way, kung saan dalawang beses na ko na isnatchan.


  1. oh god, i need to get mine! is it okay if i get it for the first time there?

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. its more fun in the Philippines? damn. i need to get mine too.. :|

  4. tsk. another horror story. good thing they now have what they call an e-clearance system of application, where half of the process is done online (nbi online website). it is faster and more convenient, no more waking up early. here is my experience:

  5. Hi, where does the line starts? Sa main entrance mismo ng mall or dun sa may terminal ng fx?