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DFA opens passport appointment slots from July to September

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Wednesday, May 2nd, 2018

FILE PHOTO: Philippine passports

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) announced Wednesday that its online appointment system will start accepting new applications and renewal of passports for the months of July to September.

DFA, however, clarified that the system will not open for appointments to the DFA-Aseana Complex in Parañaque City. DFA Assistant Secretary Frank Cimafranca said this is because the e-payment system in the said consular office is still being processed.

The e-payment system is a mechanism designed by DFA which allows applicants to pay fees online. It aims to stop bogus applicants and fixers. It also fast tracks the processing of passport applications.

“This time they will not do that because they will have to pay upfront so only people with urgent and legitimate need to have a passport will really book online,” explained Cimafranca.

Following the pilot-testing conducted by DFA in the e-payment system, appearance rate of passport applicants has increased to 95%.

DFA admits that the bulk of passport applications pose a great challenge to the agency. They call on the public’s understanding of the matter.

“We are not trying to prevent people from applying for a passport. Ang pakiusap lang namin kung hindi naman kailangan agad (All we ask is that if it’s not urgent) then bear with us and just wait for the opportunity by availing online appointment system,” Asec. Cimafrance concluded. — Joan Nano | UNTV News & Rescue

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DFA identifies OFW found inside a septic tank in South Korea

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Monday, May 7th, 2018

PASAY CITY, Philippines – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) confirmed Monday, May 7, that it has identified the overseas Filipino worker (OFW) whose remains were found inside a septic tank in South Korea.

DFA Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano refused to name the victim, whose identity was verified through DNA samples from relatives, so as not to preempt the ongoing investigation.

The victim, who was reported missing since last month, arrived in South Korea in 2016 and worked as a factory worker.

DFA is now expediting the repatriation of the remains of the victim while authorities are tracking the whereabouts of the prime suspect who is also an OFW. – Asher Cadapan Jr. | UNTV News & Rescue

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Cayetano says no to resignation unless Duterte orders it

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Thursday, May 3rd, 2018

Department Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano

 

PASAY CITY, Philippines – Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano maintained there is no reason for him to resign, at least for now, following reports of career diplomats allegedly calling for his ouster from the DFA.

Cayetano said he will only leave his post should President Rodrigo Duterte ask him to.

“If the President wants me to go, I will go happily and I will continue to support him,” he said.

Cayetano said though it is normal for critics to make such call, he urged them to leave the agency and its career officials out of the controversy.

The Secretary remains confident that he has the support of DFA staff behind him amid the issues.

“If a majority in the Department of Foreign Affairs says, ‘we cannot follow you,’ I have no business being there. But so far, I have had meetings with them and, so far, they understand. They might not necessarily agree with our direction, but they understand,” he concluded. – Asher Cadapan Jr. | UNTV News & Rescue

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Kuwait expels Philippine ambassador amid diplomatic row

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, April 26th, 2018

Philippine Embassy in Kuwait

 

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA)  has confirmed that the Kuwaiti government has expelled Ambassador Renato Villa and has given him a week to return to Manila.

The expulsion comes in the wake of Kuwait’s diplomatic protest after videos emerged showing the undercover rescue of distressed Filipino workers by embassy personnel.

In a statement sent to media, the DFA said it finds the action taken by Kuwait “deeply disturbing” especially after Kuwaiti Ambassador Musaed Saleh Ahmad Althwaikh assured DFA Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano during their recent meeting that all is well despite the incident.

The Department added that it will seek an explanation from Ambassador Saleh first thing on Thursday.

Diplomatic tensions have been simmering between the two nations triggered by the murder of a Filipina domestic helper in the Arab country.— UNTV News & Rescue

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