The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has banned its personnel at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) from going on vacation leave until the end of the month to maximize manpower assigned at the country’s main gateway.
BI Port Operations Division chief Carlos Capulong said the order is contained in a directive he issued which extends up to Jan. 31 the period within which immigration personnel at the NAIA are banned from taking vacation leaves.
The ban, which started last Dec. 16 before the Christmas holiday break, was supposed to expire last Jan. 15.
Capulong said the ban on filing vacation leaves was extended for two more weeks as the number of BI officers at the airport infected with coronavirus (COVID-19) soared in the past few days.
He stressed the directive was necessary to ensure unhampered airport operations by the BI amid the increasing number of personnel tested positive for the virus or are in quarantine.
“No application for leave during this period will be approved and all filed leaves are hereby cancelled to ensure that we have enough personnel to service the traveling public,” Capulong added.
As of yesterday (Monday), a total of 138 BI-POD personnel have been tested positive for the virus. An additional 129 employees remain on quarantine while waiting for the results of their swab tests.
Last week, BI Commissioner Jaime Morente issued an advisory downgrading its office operations to 30 percent worksite capacity due today the spike of the disease in its offices.