No more overtime pay for BI officers

Posted at 09/13/2012 12:35 PM | Updated as of 09/13/2012 6:52 PM

MANILA, Philippines – Bureau of Immigration officials assigned in airports will no longer get overtime pay following orders from President Aquino.

BI officials were told that the funds used to pay for their overtime pay will no longer be charged to airline companies.

Immigration Officer Raul Medina on Thursday said the practice is not detrimental to the business of airline companies.

“Ito po ay nakapaloob sa isang batas--Section 7A ng Commonwealth Act No. 613 or the Philippine Immigrations Act.

Under Section 7(A) of the said law, “Immigration employees may be assigned by the Commissioner of Immigration to do overtime work at rates fixed by him when the service rendered is to be paid for by shipping companies and airlines or other persons served”.

Medina clarified that airline companies will only pay immigration officers they requested to render overtime work.

In August, outgoing Transportation and Communications Secretary Mar Roxas sought to stop the issuance of overtime pay and instead implement a rotating shifting schedule to serve the airlines daily operations.

The move triggered a silent protest from immigration officials. Despite the rotating policy, immigration officials said they were still forced to work beyond 10 hours just to address the shortage in manpower

“In the airport, they render more than 10 hour-work. They do not have holidays. They only have one day off in a week. Nililipat pa sila constantly ng terminal. Even their work schedules were being rotated. Napakahirap po,” said Immigration Spokesperson Ma. Antonette Mangrobang.

The BI now plans to sit down with the budget department to resolve how employees can get their overtime pay without having to charge airline companies.

Meantime, immigration commissioner Ricardo David promised to fight corruption within the ranks of immigration employees.

The development plan is about the new immigration law, professionalizing our personnel, the acquisition of equipment as well as a new immigration building.

On Tuesday, the President scolded the bureau on its anniversary, citing his frustations over the entry of foreign criminals in the country and the escape of the Reyes brothers supposedly in connivance with immigration officers. With ANC and dzMM