Emergency Hotlines: LANDLINE (+63) 2 911 – 8688

DFA slammed over alleged anomalous printing of new passports

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Monday, June 19th, 2017


MANILA, Philippines — The convener of Action for Good Governance, Atty. Argee Guevarra, argues that the quality of the new batch of passports are substandard.

In a press conference this on Monday, Atty. Guevarra showed a leaf from a supposed newly printed passport given to him by his informant.

He said compared to the ones we have now, the new print is thinner and the embedded watermarks are not that clear.

He added this might be labelled as fake and will not pass the reading machines at airports locally and internationally.

This might result in possible detention and repatriation of passport holders and overseas Filipino workers who will use such passports.

“The new quality of paper and the corresponding watermarks, it will be revealed that the new passport paper wont even pass master the passport reading machines, locally and internationally,” Guevarra said.

Atty. Guevarra says DFA entered into a questionable transaction with Asian Productivity Organization or APO that is contracted to do the printing.

An informant allegedly told Guevarra that APO outsourced the printing through another private corporation, the United Graphic Expression Corporation (UGEC) without the permission from DFA.

“Our existing passports has specific watermarks specific thickness of paper, and yet because of the APO production outsourcing through anomalous joint venture agreement with private printing office, our use of passport are compromised,” Guevarra added.

Guevarra said UGEC is the company also involved in mighty cigarettes stamp issue.

As of this time, DFA has not yet issued a statement or comment on the matter. — Joyce Balancio | UNTV News and Rescue

Tags: , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

PNP investigates DFA employees conniving with passport fixers

by UNTV   |   Posted on Tuesday, March 6th, 2018

An office of Department of Foreign Affairs in Aseana Business Park in Parañaque City

MANILA, Philippines —The operation of the Philippine National Police (PNP) against passport fixers does not end in their apprehension.

The PNP is now investigating some Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) employees who are allegedly involved with some of the passport fixers.

“Continuous ang aming collaboration with DFA at itong police sa monitoring at operation namin against fixers (Our collaboration with the DFA in monitoring and operations against fixers is continuous),” PNP-Southern Police District (SPD) chief PCSupt. Tomas Apolinario.

Just recently, 23 passport fixers were arrested in an entrapment operation at the DFA office in Aseana in Paranaque City.

The fixers are now detained at the SPD in Taguig. They will be charged with estafa and violation of RA 9485 or the Anti-Red Tape Act.

According to PNP, fixers are taking advantage of the difficulty in acquiring a passport.

Part of their modus operandi is asking money in exchange for an appointment slot at the DFA.

There are also those who would ask for P3,000 for a speedy process of their passport.

Some are involved in selling fake endorsement letter from the government.

“Ang nangyayari nga hindi naman napapabilis. Niloloko ka lang. Kinukuha lang pera mo pero actually dadaan ka rin talaga sa normal procedure,” said Apolinario.

(It doesn’t speed up the process at all. They’re just scamming you. They just take your money but you actually still  to go through the normal procedure.)

Meanwhile, some applicants still choose to go through the legal process instead of getting the services offered by fixers.

“Kapag sarili mas maganda kasi baka minsan scam kasi (It’s better to do it yourself to avoid getting scammed) ,” said Larry Pagunsan, a passport applicant.

“Kasi po yung fixer kasi kapag naglalakad ka na ng passport baka may sabit din (With a fixer, something might come up while processing your passport),” said Bryan Lacson, also an applicant.

The PNP believes that aside from the DFA employees that are now under investigation, the fixers belong to a group that victimizes passport applicants. — Mon Jocson | UNTV News & Rescue

Tags: , , ,

PHL continues negotiation with China to rename 5 seamounts in Philippine Rise

by UNTV   |   Posted on Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

Department of Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Ernesto Abella

MANILA, Philippines —The illegal entry of China in the Philippine Rise led to the naming of its five underwater sea features.

But the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) noted that no protest has been filed yet against China.

This, after the recommendation of the National Mapping Resource Information Authority (NAMRIA) to rename the said natural resources.

The Philippine government chose to be diplomatic and have a bilateral talk with China.

“The mechanism we’re using is the bilateral dialogue and having said that, that’s where next steps are going to be developed. But basically, an agreement has been made that no further researches must be done without the permission of the Philippine side,” said DFA Usec. Ernesto Abella.

Abella said China agreed on this and added that they are ready for any negotiations to resolve the issue.

“We raised our concern. When we raised our concern, they were willing, quite willing to proceed upon agreed upon terms from henceforth,” said the undersecretary.

A maritime law expert, on the other hand, said that if the Philippines is serious in reclaiming the said feature, this should have been done before China’s discovery.

“The appropriate and peace communication should have been before the approval of the names instead of years later. The first name was approved back in 2015, pa. [The] Second set in 2016 and then the last two in 2017 or the last year,” said maritime law expert Prof. Jay Batongbacal.

For Senator Bam Aquino, the administration should fight for the country’s sovereign rights and support Filipino scientists in the conduct of independent research in the area.

Senate President Koko Pimentel, in the meantime, supports the idea of changing the name given by China on the said five features in Benham Rise.

“If there are procedures to give names to underwater features, there are also procedures to change the names. So labanan na lang yan (it’s a fight for) who has the right to give the name,” said Senate President Sen. Aquilino Pimentel III.

Despite this, Pimentel said that there is nothing to worry about the said issue.

“Let’s not be alarmist, because giving name is not really claiming it,” said Pimentel.

As of now, bilateral dialogues between Philippines and China continue to clarify the illegal entry of China in the Philippine side. But the country’s position is clear — no state is allowed to enter the territory without permission from the Philippine side. — Mai Bermudez | UNTV News and Rescue

Tags: , , , ,

Kuwait extends amnesty program for undocumented Filipinos until April 22

by UNTV   |   Posted on Wednesday, February 21st, 2018

FILE PHOTO: A fishing boat passes in front of the Kuwait City skyline September 11, 2010. REUTERS/Stephanie McGehee

MANILA, Philippines —The Kuwaiti government has granted the request of the Philippines to extend its amnesty program for overstaying Filipinos in the Arab nation.

Based on the statement of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), the program has been extended for two months or until April 22.

The Kuwaiti government’s amnesty program is supposed to end on Thursday, February 22.

Based on the figures of the DFA, there are more than 10,000 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Kuwait who needs to be repatriated.

Only more than 3,000 of them have applied for amnesty. They either fled from their employers or have expired visas. — UNTV News & Rescue

Tags: , , ,