The Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Bureau of Immigration will implement stricter rules on the visa upon arrival (VUA) policy, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said on Saturday.“The DOJ and the BI are tightening up the rules on the issuance of visa upon arrival (VUA),” Guevarra said in a message to reporters.Guevarra noted that they would “limit the maximum permissible period to 30 days, blacklist overstaying aliens, ensure non-convertibility to work visas, and impose sanctions on travel agencies breaking the rules.” Justice Undersecretary Markk Perete previously disclosed that the BI was already reviewing the system and identified some of its loopholes. According to Perete, one of the loopholes is that the time covered by the VUA — initially valid for three months — can be subjected to an extension of another three months.
The Bureau of Immigration (BI) is now reviewing the visa upon arrival (VUA) policy to determine if the scheme should be refined or be completely scrapped. Justice Undersecretary Markk Perete said the BI’s review started about a month ago and has already identified loopholes in the system. The VUA is a facility available to Chinese tourists only. Perete however said other foreign nationals can also avail of it if they fall under the following categories:1) Foreign investors/businessmen endorsed by the BOI, PRA, PCCI and other chambers; 2) athletes and delegates to sports competitions; 3) delegates/participants to international conventions; 4) foreign investors / executives in investments endorsed by the govt; and 5) officials of the WB, ADB and other development partners.
Lambasted on multiple occasions over lewd jokes directed at women, President Duterte will be the first to obey the recently signed “Bawal Bastos” law, which imposes stiffer penalties on gender-based sexual attacks, Malacañang said yesterday. Presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo said Republic Act 11313 or the Safe Streets and Public Spaces Act demonstrated how Duterte recognized the need to prevent gender-based sexual harassment. “Since the President signed that law, it means that he recognizes the need [for] that law. And since he is the chief enforcer of all laws of the Philippines, he will be the first one to obey the law,” Panelo said. When Duterte cracks lewd jokes, he is not being obscene, Panelo said, and that the jokes are meant to entertain his audience and not to offend. “First of all, you’ve assumed that the President is bastos (lewd), naging bastos (that he was ever lewd). He never was bastos. When he cracks jokes, it was intended to make people laugh, never to offend,” Panelo said. “If you will just listen to the jokes of the President talagang matatawa ka eh, matatawa ka (it will really make you laugh). Audience … ‘di ba, they give a hearty laughter. Hindi naman bastos (it’s not lewd),” the Palace official said.