The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) will continue monitoring human trafficking activities at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), Department of Justice (DOJ) Undersecretary Markk Perete assured Thursday with the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) placing its NAIA office under lockdown.
“Aside from the BI (Bureau of Immigration), IACAT also works with the NBI-International Airport Investigation Division (NBI-IAID) which conducts surveillance and immediate investigation of possible trafficking cases within the airport,” said Perete.
He added other IACAT units are also operational including its IACAT Operations Center and the NBI’s Human Trafficking Division (AHTRAD), both of which are part of the IACAT repatriation team.
Perete explained the IACAT repatriation team “handles Trafficking in Persons (TIP) cases at the NAIA and repatriation of OFWs (overseas Filipino workers).”
Perete also noted that aside from the DOJ, the IACAT also includes the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).
The undersecretary pointed out these other member agencies are also “able to provide immediate relief for the victims.”
DOJ Undersecretary Emmeline Aglipay-Villar, who is the IACAT undersecretary-in-charge, already issued an order placing the NAIA Task Force Against Trafficking (NAIATFAT) and IACAT offices located at the NAIA Terminals 1, 2 and 3 on “a strict 14-day lockdown” until July 22.
The undersecretary explained the move was made after four NAIATFAT personnel tested positive for COVID-19 after undergoing confirmatory polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) last July 2.