Passport applications with confirmed appointments processed at new DFA building

March 5, 2010 11:14 pm 

MANILA, March 5 —- Passport applications with confirmed appointments will be accepted and processed at a new building housing the Office of Consular Affairs (OCA) of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) beginning March 8, Monday, it was announced Friday.

The new four-storey OCA building is located at the corner of Macapagal Avenue and Bradco Street, Aseana Business Park, Pasay City, near the SM Mall of Asia.

Applicants may set an appointment by going on line (www.passport.com.ph) or by calling 737-1000. Travel agents can secure an appointment at www.dfa.gov.ph or email at scheduler@dfa-appointment.net. They may also call 834-4961, 834-4855 and 834-3707 for other details.

Applicants are no longer required to bring photographs since they will have their pictures taken using ePassport data capturing machines at DFA-OCA.

But they still need to bring other necessary requirements such as the application form that is available for download at the DFA website and at the reception desks of the new consular building.

Only those with confirmed appointments will be accommodated at the new facility.

“This appointment system will be strictly implemented to enable DFA to pre-process information submitted in advance by an applicant, thus avoiding long queues, as experienced by walk-in applicants at the DFA-OCA main office in Roxas Boulevard,” OCA Assistant Secretary Renato L. Villapando said.

The new ePassport technology has built-in capacity to detect fraud by capturing biometrics, signature, and fingerprints of applicants. Applicants are also advised that only genuine documents should be submitted.

Meanwhile, to avoid being victimized by fixers, applicants are advised to deal only with DFA-OCA personnel inside the building. No escorts are allowed to accompany individual applicants.

The new OCA building is part of the ongoing modernization program initiated by DFA Secretary Alberto G. Romulo to further improve the DFA’s frontline services which include harnessing new technologies in passport and visa issuances and streamlined procedures in the authentication of documents.

”It is part of our dream for the Filipino people to have a world-class passport and consular services. We have done it through the Machine-Readable Passport and the ePassport, and now the dream is complete with the new DFA-OCA building,” Romulo said. (PNA)

scs/GJB

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