Philippine Immigration Arrival Card Controversial

With the cancellation of arrival/departure card for having questionable advertisements, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) is looking to tap a new system that will capture and store information from the cards being filled up by international travelers in all airports in the country.

With this, Immigration officer-in-charge Ronaldo Ledesma has directed Jollybert Galleon, BI computer section chief, to conduct a study on the matter and submit recommendation as soon as possible.

“The bureau needs to come up with a more economical and efficient mode of retrieving and encoding the data in the cards without entering into contracts with private companies that causes controversies and problems for the bureau,” he said.

For his part, Galleon said he is looking to use the bureau’s existing passport reading machines in the airports in lieu of the equipment provided by e.Xtend, the company that produces the infamous cards being distributed by the bureau to travelers who enter and leave the country.

He said the passport readers can be re-configured to scan not only machine-readable passports but also the cards.

Last week, the Department of Justice (DOJ) ordered the cancellation of the contract due to the controversies generated by advertisements printed on the cards.

Under its contract with the BI, e.Xtend, Inc. also provides the equipment that scans and retrieves information written in the cards. (PNA)

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