Soon after turning over to the Philippine National Red Cross the last check from TXTPower’s fundraising campaign for typhoon Ondoy’s victims, I received a call from Mr. Mario Shiliashki, general manager of PayPal Southeast Asia & India.
Mr. Shiliashki told he was “reaching out on behalf of the company” to apologize for the incident and assured the company’s respect and support for the efforts of Filipinos and our friends abroad to provide relief aid to victims of the typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng. He said that what had happened would help improve Paypal’s processes and procedures.
Even as I thanked Paypal for lifting restrictions on the TXTPower account, I expressed to Mr. Shiliashki the disappointment and anger of the Filipino online community over what the company did to TXTPower and to PhilippineAid.com.
Mr. Shiliashki confirmed that the permit issued by Singapore’s regulators allows Paypal Southeast Asia & India to accept and handle payments “only for goods and services” and not for donations to non-profits and charities.
However, Mr. Shiliashki and I agreed to “move forward” despite this regulatory issue because of the importance of sending relief aid to the typhoon victims. Mr. Shiliashki told me that Paypal would try to seek exemptions from Singapore’s regulators for a number of Philippines-based non-profits and charities.
Hopefully, given this small window, online donation and fundraising campaigns via Paypal can resume soon and help bring much needed relief aid to victims of Ondoy and Pepeng.