MANILA, Aug. 9— The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has deployed additional immigration officers to international ports outside of Metro Manila in a bid to prevent the entry of foreign terrorists and other undesirable aliens in the provinces.
With this, BI Commissioner Jaime Morente has issued personnel orders directing immigration officers to report for duty in the other international ports nationwide.
They will be reassigned in airports in Mactan-Cebu, Davao, Iloilo, Kalibo, and the international seaport in Zamboanga City.
He noted that the BI can now afford to disperse its personnel to the provinces as the bureau continues to expedite the recruitment of immigration officers.
“We are still in the process of selecting qualified applicants to hundreds of vacant positions for immigration officers,” he said in a statement, noting that those who have been hired are now manning immigration booths in the three terminals of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
Morente explained that the move, which was recommended by BI port operations division chief Marc Red Mariñas, was aimed at augmenting the number of BI personnel assigned in the ports whose primary function is to process and screen arriving and departing foreign and local travelers.
On the other hand, the BI official noted that he made the recommendation as there are enough immigration officers currently assigned at the NAIA.
“As more and more immigration officers are hired in the next few months, there will be more who will be reassigned and deployed to the provinces to beef up our manpower in ports where we used to have a negligible presence,” Marinas added.
He also disclosed that they are close to meeting the ideal number of immigration officers who should be stationed at the NAIA, thus paving the way for the deployment of more personnel to other ports.