By Ferdinand Patinio

(Photo courtesy of BI)

MANILA – Immigration personnel in all international ports in the country would be barred from going on leave before, during, and after the Lenten break to ensure adequate manpower is available to serve travelers.

In a statement Monday, Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Norman Tansingco said the bureau’s “no leave policy” is in effect from March 15 to April 1, to ensure that all immigration booths at the airports are fully manned to process the large volume of passengers who are expected to enter and leave the country during the long holidays.

“We assure the traveling public that our counters are fully manned to process them in our counters,” he added.

Covered by the ban are all employees assigned at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) and all other international ports of entry and exit nationwide.

The BI projects around 39,000 to 44,000 arrivals per day in the next few days, while they expect around 40,000 to 44,000 international departures.

Tansingco said they expect the volume of departing passengers to rise by Holy Wednesday, while the volume of arriving passengers is expected to rise by Easter Sunday.

Tansingco also ordered the temporary deployment of almost 70 additional personnel to augment manpower at major international airports.

He said mobile counters are on standby to help process travelers. (PNA)