85-year-old man gets travel permit that says his reason was a “pregnancy checkup”

To contain the heavy Covid-19 outbreak in Vietnam currently, many cities and provinces are put under travel restrictions, where citizens must have travel permits with valid reasons approved by authorities to be able to go out.

As necessary as it is, the practice has led to a sudden spike in the amount of paperwork needed. Understandably, some hiccups are inevitable.

In a particularly hilarious paperwork fail, an 85-year-old man receives a travel permit listing his reason to go out as “going for a pregnancy checkup”. Of course, this was later confirmed to be a mistake.

Here’s how the story plays out.

The travel permit listed the elderly man’s reason for going out as “pregnancy checkup”

man pregnancy travel permit
The travel permit lists the man’s reason to go out as “to go for a pregnancy checkup”
Image credit: Tuổi Trẻ

Last weekend, a picture of a travel permit in the southern Tiền Giang Province started circulating on the Internet due to the bizarre information it contained.

Issued on 18th September, the paper listed the traveler as a man born in 1936. It had all the required information, including the man’s name, address, ID card number, and there was a seal and a signature from the local People’s Committee’s representative. In short, everything appeared to be in order.

That is, save for the man’s reason to go out, which said, “going for a pregnancy checkup at Tiền Giang General Hospital”.

Needless to say, this particular part was a mistake.

The document was caused by an editing error

A police officer checking a citizen’s travel permit

Image credit: Công An Nhân Dân

Mdm. Nguyễn Thị Nga, chairwoman of the People’s Committee responsible for issuing the paper, later explained the reason for this to Tuổi Trẻ.

As it turned out, earlier on the same day, two pregnant women had come to the office to apply for their travel permits to go for their pregnancy checkups. Then, when the elderly man came to ask for his travel permit, the office workers used the same document format to print his paper permit.

However, it would seem they only changed the applicant’s personal information, but forgot to edit the reason.

Let’s be understanding toward government workers

As the Covid-19 pandemic rages on, we understand that authorities are also facing great pressure to keep us safe. Minor mistakes are only to be expected.

In this case, the office workers’ fumble didn’t lead to any bad consequences. If anything, it gave us a quirky story to have a good laugh over, which is hard to come by in these hard times.

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Cover image adapted from Công An Nhân Dân and Tuổi Trẻ, left panel for illustrative purposes only

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