MANILA, Philippines — The Bureau of Immigration (BI) on Tuesday said it is planning to enhance its offices and bolster its monitoring capabilities notably in border crossing stations in Mindanao.
BI Commissioner Jaime Morente said in a statement that two stations – the Taganak station located near the Sulu Sea, and the Bongao station located near the Celebes Sea – have been identified as priority areas in the bureau’s IT systems upgrade and infrastructure improvement.
Immigration Bay Service Section Chief Alnazib Decampong reported in the same statement that they have conducted on-site visits and studies and are ready with their recommendations for the specific needs of the offices.
“It is necessary that we strengthen immigration monitoring in these border crossing stations,” said Decampong.
“We see these areas as an upcoming major trade and travel hubs in the next few decades,” he added.
Decampong explained that with the improvements, the agency would also be able to strengthen its inspection measures in preventing the entry of illegal aliens and foreign terrorists.
Added personnel to be deployed in said areas is also being eyed, said Morente.
“We have increased the number of BI personnel in these areas, but are looking into maximizing our numbers so as to better implement our mandate,” he explained.
The BI said it is also planning to expand the implementation of its Advance Passenger Information System (APIS) to the southern region.
APIS is a system wherein other airlines and the immigration systems are linked to see the details of an arriving passenger.
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