(Eagle News) — The Bureau of Immigration is eyeing strengthening its offices and monitoring capabilities in border crossing stations in Mindanao.
According to bureau chief Jaime Morente, the Taganak station located near the Sulu Sea and the Bongao station near the Celebes Sea, in particular, have been identified as priority areas in IT systems upgrade and infrastructure improvement.
Bureau Bay Service Section Chief Alnazib Decampong said part of its office-strengthening is the improvement in office inspection measures to prevent the possible entry of illegal aliens and foreign terrorists.
“It is necessary that we strengthen immigration monitoring in these border crossing stations. We see these areas as upcoming major trade and travel hubs in the next few decades,” he said.
Morente added the bureau has also increased the number of its personnel in these areas, “but are looking into maximizing our numbers so as to better implement our mandate.”
The bureau said it also plans to expand the implementation of the Advance Passenger Information System (APIS) to the southern region.
According to Decampong, bureau personnel have conducted on-site visits and studies for this purpose, and are ready with their recommendations for the specific needs of the offices.