Good News, For a Change: BSP Helps 70-Year-Old Man Recover P50,000 Savings Destroyed by Termites

This story has a happy ending.

We’ve all practically been conditioned to expect bad news whenever we scroll through our Facebook feeds, but for once, we have good, uplifting news for you. The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) helped a 70-year-old ice delivery man recover P50,000 after his life savings were destroyed by termites. 

Adonis Buemia, whose hard-earned cash savings were mutilated by the destructive insects, is a single parent and his family’s primary caregiver to a special needs child. From his livelihood delivering ice for close to 30 years, Buemia was able to earn enough to buy a house, a tricycle, and support his family, all while saving P100 every day from his P300 daily income. 

He kept his savings hidden away in a cabinet in his home, but to his great misfortune, it wasn’t robbers that got to his savings, but termites. With the help of a local TV station, Buemia was connected to the BSP, where the Currency Policy and Integrity Department (CPID) evaluated the ruined bills worth P50,000. 


If bills are damaged, the BSP will check for the following qualifications before it will endorse the bills for replacement: 

  • the size of the remaining bill should be 60% or 3/5th of the original size of the bill;
  • a portion of any of the two facsimile signatures must still be seen or observed; and
  • the windowed security thread must remain intact unless otherwise caused by fire, insect and any form of unintentional mutilation.

After Buemia’s savings met all of these requirements, BSP Acting Deputy Director Nenette Malabrigo stepped in and facilitated the replacement of Buemia’s hard-earned savings, which he got back on August 11. 

"Masayang-masaya talaga ako at napalitan na at naibalik nang buo ang ipon ko. Maraming salamat sa bangko na tinanggap nila ‘yong pera. At maraming salamat sa Bangko Sentral sa lahat ng tulong para mapalitan ‘yong pera ko," said Buemia.

This is one story that got a happy ending, something we are all sorely in need of nowadays. 

To prevent this from happening to others, BSP is promoting the Basic Deposit Account (BDA), which is a no-frills account that doesn’t require a valid ID, has no maintaining balance, and only requires P100. BDAs are available at almost any bank and are part of the banking sector’s wider mission to promote financial inclusion in the Philippines. 

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Anri Ichimura
Section Editor, Esquire Philippines
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