Honest Baguio cab driver gets scholarship

Rhys Buccat, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 23 2017 06:31 PM | Updated as of Jan 23 2017 06:52 PM

Photo by Ace Estrada II

MANILA -- A brighter future now awaits Baguio cab driver Reggie Cabututan after he returned a luggage containing important documents, gadgets, and cash to an Australian businessman.

Last January 17, Cabututan dropped Australian businessman Trent Shields at Calle Uno in Quezon Hill, Baguio City. He was in a hurry and didn't notice that he left his bag with approximately P1 million in the taxi.

Ace Estrada II, the president of BPO training company Vivixx Academy and Shields' friend, narrated the incident in a Facebook post.

"How often have we read about taxi drivers in Baguio doing an honest deed and returning valuables to their rightful owners? Today, my Australian friend Trent, completely forgot about his luggage when he alighted at Calle Uno Coworking Space. It took a full thirty minutes before he realized his mistake, and all he could remember about the taxi was that 'it was white.' Passport, Macbook Pro, money, everything was in there! Never did I pray so hard that the news accounts of Baguio City’s taxi driver’s collective honesty was true. But it was! Just as we were leaving for the police station to file a report, Trent’s taxi pulled in. Never was a sight more welcome than the smiling face of this driver. What an awesome win for humanity! Mr. Reggie Cabututan, driver of Dustin Brant Taxi, you are the finest of your tribe. I have never felt more proud to be Filipino than today."

Estrada's post went viral with 3,787 shares and over 22,000 reactions in just two days.

The local government of Baguio also awarded a certificate of commendation to the honest taxi driver during their flag ceremony on Monday.

An unexpected reward

On Monday, the Vivixx Academy and Australia-based coding training center Coder Factory awarded a scholarship worth P220,000 to attend the six-month Coding Boot Camp in June 2017.

Estrada said completion of this course will guarantee Cabututan an internship with an Australian company that could lead to a job that pays a starting salary of up to P1.7 million.

According to reports, Cabututan is a native of Rosario, La Union. He travels to Baguio every day to work for his wife and four children.