BI: Stop spreading fake news on arriving aliens

STOP spreading fake news.

This call was made to the public by Bureau of Immigration (BI) acting spokesman Melvin Mabulac, in reaction to a viral post on social media that a flight from Wuhan, China landed yesterday in Manila.

Mabulac appealed for a stop to spreading fake news about arriving aliens despite the ongoing travel restrictions being implemented by the agency, as he stressed that international flights are not banned and that some flights, passenger and cargo, continue to operate but the bureau is implementing strict restrictions on the entry and exit of people.

Earlier, the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines issued a clarification stating that Royal Charter Air 417, which reportedly landed which was the subject of the viral post, carried only cargo. 

Under guidelines from the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF), cargo flights may continue to operate.

Mabulac said the BI is implementing restrictions on the entry and exit of people. Under existing guidelines, only Filipinos, their spouse and children, accredited foreign government and international organization officials and foreign airline crewmen are allowed to enter the country.

"International travel restrictions remain even under GCQ (General community quarantine)," he said.

Foreign nationals may depart the Philippines anytime, while only overseas Filipino workers, permanent residents or holders of student visas in their country of destination may be allowed to depart.

“Arriving and departing commercial passenger flights that continue to operate may carry only those exempted from the ban,” Mabulac added, as he called on netizens to stop spreading fake news and to "check and double check information online, and always verify through legitimate sources".