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BI relaunches 24/7 Helpline, intensifies intel operations

Norman Tansingco
BI commissioner Norman Tansingco intensifies intel operations in provinces. (JERRY S. TAN)

The Bureau of Immigration (BI) announced that it has intensified its intelligence operations in the provinces and relaunched the Immigration Helpline PH 24/7, which aims to encourage netizens to report illegal aliens in their areas.

BI Commissioner Norman Tansingco said that he had ordered BI Intelligence Division Chief Fortunato ‘Jun’ Manahan, Jr. to look into reports of illegal aliens that might be hiding in far flung areas of the country.

Manahan, for his part, reported that they have recently arrested illegal aliens in the provinces of La Union and Laguna.

On February 28, Indian national Harpreet Singh, 34, was collared at his residence in Agoo, La Union by operatives from the BI intelligence division. Investigation showed that Singh had overstayed in the country for more than four years as his last record of arrival here was in February 2018.

On the very same day, intelligence operatives arrested five Chinese nationals inside a warehouse in Binan, Laguna for being undocumented, overstaying and working without proper visas in violation of the Philippine Immigration Act of 1940.

Manahan said regional intelligence officers have been deployed to conduct investigations in different regions of the country.

Meantime, the helpline was conceptualized as a direct line to the Office of the Commissioner for those who might have concerns, queries, or suggestions for the bureau.

“We have expanded the scope of the helpline to accommodate anonymous reports from the public about illegal aliens that might be hiding in their areas. We see that social media is a powerful tool, and it can be used to receive valuable information that might help us rid the country of foreign nationals abusing our hospitality,” Tansingco said.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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