JEDDAH – The Philippine Consulate General here has been allowed by Saudi authorities to endorse undocumented Filipinos for deportation three times a week instead of only one.
Saudi immigration officials made the decision to expedite the issuance of exit visas for Filipinos taking advantage of the amnesty given to illegally staying foreigners in the Kingdom.
"Sa ngayon binigyan tayo ng tatlong araw sa isang linggo ng immigration officials sa Shumaisi at kinukumpirma pa natin kung kailan at ilan ang pwede nating dalhin sa deportation," said Consul RJ Sumague.
Sumague said some 4,000 Filipinos have already applied for the amnesty since it started on March 29, but only about 500 of them have been issued exit visas so far. The amnesty period will last for 90 days or three months.
Sumague said some applications were rejected after it was discovered that the applicant has a pending case with the police while others have no records whatsoever.
On Tuesday, the Consulate endorsed some 400 undocumented Filipinos, some of them with children who will undergo DNA test.
A DNA test is required for parents with children to ensure that they are related, Sumague said. —Ronaldo Concha/KBK, GMA News