The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines - As part of moves to cut the long queues of international passengers at immigration counters, authorities have deployed 20 newly-hired officers to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) and added more immigration counters to process documents of passengers.
NAIA Immigration is working with the airport management in easing passengers’ inconvenience, especially during peak hours when as many as 1,000 passengers are seen waiting in line at the immigration counter.
Bureau of Immigration Commissioner Ricardo David Jr. said the 20 new immigration officers were among the 35 bureau employees recently hired or promoted to permanent positions in the agency by Justice Secretary Leila de Lima.
David said BI continues to beef up its manpower to address the increasing volume of travelers departing and arriving at the premiere airport.
“These employees were earlier picked and recommended for hiring and promotion by the BI personnel selection and promotions board from among thousands of applicants for various positions in the bureau’s plantilla,” David said.
The job applicants went through a rigid screening process, including written tests and panel interview, aside from undergoing a month-long training at the agency’s academy in Clark Field, Pampanga.
“We want to make sure that the employees we hire and promote are the best and brightest so that we can finally attain our vision of highly competent and professionalized rank and file in the bureau,” the BI chief declared.
He said the bureau is still screening thousands of applicants for about a hundred positions for immigration officer that the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) had authorized the BI to fill up.
David said the bureau sought authority to hire more immigration officers as there are no longer enough people to man the immigration arrival and departure counters at the airport terminals.
“These perennial complaints of long queues in our immigration counters will be solved only if we triple the number of our personnel at the airports,” he added.
David said BI has only about 1,100 organic employees and some 400 contractual confidential agents.
Half of these personnel are assigned at the main office, airports and extension offices in Metro Manila, and the rest to more than 50 BI field offices and sub-ports throughout the country.