MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Immigration has said that the 3,000-plus foreigners who became permanent Philippine residents under the 1995 amnesty law may now have their visas re-stamped – the new stamp will now allow them to travel in and out of the country freely.
BI officials said the restamping would enable holders to comply with the annual reporting requirement.
The deferment created a mess for the thousands of foreigners who held an alien certificate of registration identity card (otherwise known as an ACR I-card) – without it they could not travel in or out of the Philippines.
“As a result, aliens who wished to leave he country for personal, business and other reasons could not do so without losing their legal resident status,” said a BI spokesman.
Those foreigners were also unable to take part in the recent annual reporting of BI registered aliens, as they did not have a valid ACR I-card.
To add insult to injury, the BI said they now will give those foreign residents until June 15 to process their visas, but only after they pay a 3,010 peso fee, plus penalty.
Many resident aliens are up in arms over the added penalty, seeing as the delay was on the part of the BI and was completely out of everyone’s hands to get the process completed.
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