THE Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA)-Central Visayas hopes to provide more slots to increase the number of passport applicants it can serve every day.
From an average of 600 applicants per day, the DFA has added 90 more slots for applicants for this month.
Speaking before the Kapihan sa PIA (Philippine Information Agency), Wendell Canque of DFA-Central Visayas said that there is another proposal to add at least the same additional slots for the months of October and November.
However, the DFA-Central Visayas is still waiting for the Central Office to issue an order approving the plan.
“There is a lot of improvement in the delivery of services in the DFA but it so happened that the number of applicants is increasing,” said Canque.
Canque, who represented DFA-Central Visayas Director Emmanuel Espenelli, said that the capacity of a DFA office is measured by the processing and releasing of passports.
They cannot accept applications in excess of the 690 slots daily because of the limited personnel and machines, he said.
“If we add personnel, we should also add equipment to accommodate more applicants,” said Canque.
At present, DFA-Central Visayas has seven data capturing machines for seven counters. He said that it would be better to increase it to 10 machines.
“But we depend on the decision of our main office,” said Canque.
Canque said that the DFA is investigating reported bogus accounts to identify unscrupulous people who have multiple passports.
Canque said that their Fraud Management Section is establishing the identity of these people who are having multiple passports but in different names.
The illegal applications for various passports under one person were discovered through biometrics.
He said that some people who were denied passports have reportedly applied again using another name; others secured their passports with changed age so they can be hired abroad. (EOB)
Published in the SunStar Cebu newspaper on September 28, 2017.
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