Senate Ratifies RP Immigration Act of 2009

Manila Bulletin, June 5, 2010 | Go to article overview

Senate Ratifies RP Immigration Act of 2009


The Senate ratified on Saturday the proposed Philippine Immigration Act of 2009, one of the last actions made by the Senate as Congress adjourned sine die last Friday night.Under the new Immigration Act, the immigration chairman and his two associate commissioners would act as transition officials of the planned Commission on Immigration (CoI) for only one year, not for three years.Proponents have stressed that a new Immigration Act for the country is long overdue, since the present Immigration Law is already antiquated and is no longer attuned to the needs of the times. "The bill calls for the institution of policies and procedures that make it easier for foreigners to visit or do business in the Philippines," Immigration Commissioner Marcelino Libanan said.Libanan also cited provisions in the bill that strengthen the government's ability to thwart the entry of undesirable aliens, including foreign terrorists, fugitives, drug traffickers, and human traffickers.The new law also aims to streamline and strengthen the governmental structures charged with the administration and enforcement of immigration, asylum and related laws, rules and regulations to make them adaptive to the growing immigration demands of the country.It also aims to professionalize the immigration service by instituting a rigid system of screening and selection of immigration officials and employees.

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