BI cited for championing FOI

Published December 1, 2021, 1:40 PM

by Jun Ramirez

For three consecutive years, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) was cited for for championing freedom of information (FOI), prompting its leadership to assure continuous transparency of the bureau.

BI Commissioner Jaime Morente said their recognition was due to the prompt answer and resolved 90 percent of queries and request for assistance from its clientele and the general public through the government’s eFOI portal.

“Transparency and good governance is one of our key focus areas, hence we ensure that we provide accurate and accessible information to the public,” said Morente.

The BI received the FOI award from the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) during awarding rites last Thursday in Cebu City.

Morente commended BI personnel for the achievement, encouraging them to “continue doing good in providing quality service to the public”.

The BI’s national operations center (BINOC), the FOI receiving office, ensures that all queries posted under the government portal are acted with dispatch.

Morente said the BI has also set up several hotlines through which the public may share their concerns.

“Our BINOC caters to queries 24/7 through our telephone lines, emails and social media pages that are known to immediately address concerns of the public,” he said.

The award is given out by the PCOO annually to select government offices and non-government organizations that have made significant progress in affording citizens’ right to access information.