The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) told the public Saturday, Oct. 2 that it “remains committed” to fixing the problems besetting the release of passports.
“The DFA recognizes the difficulties faced by the public that have arisen due to pandemic restrictions, and we remain committed to addressing the problems as quickly as we can,” DFA spokesperson, Assistant Secretary Ed Meñez said in a statement.
Menez made clarifications on the agency’s recent decision to transfer to Double Dragon Plaza the release of passports meant for pick up at DFA Aseana. Double Dragon and DFA Aseana are both located in Pasay City.
“On this particular issue of passport releases at Double Dragon, applicants who were asked to pick up their passports at Double Dragon are those who had incomplete or undeliverable addresses, and with the change of courier service, these undeliverable passports were returned to DFA to distribute,” Meñez said.
“The clients were subsequently notified through email to come to Double Dragon. All clients are asked to check their passport status on the DFA online tracker prior to coming to or contacting the DFA,” he added.
Passport-seekers have the option of getting their passports delivered to their homes via courier, but hiccups like erroneous addresses, non-presence of the clients, and lack of lack of authorization letters have led to more than 2,000 passports being declared as “undeliverable”.
These passports were returned to the DFA for pick up by the clients themselves. Last week, the agency announced that it would release passports at Double Dragon.
“The Double Dragon group of clients already have their passports ready for release and we are constantly working out how to better accommodate them. We are working hard to address the more difficult situation of those with errors on their applications,” Meñez said.
The challenges caused by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic notwithstanding, the DFA is actually on its way to surpassing last year’s output when it comes to the number of passports processed.