The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has reassigned an officer to a back office after a Filipino traveler claimed that she missed her flight due to an intense grilling by the officer. According to BI spokesperson Dana Sandoval, the move was to give way to the agency’s ongoing investigation into the incident, which went viral on TikTok after being posted by lifestyle blogger Cham Tanteras.
In the video, Tanteras alleged that the officer had questioned her on seemingly irrelevant topics, such as the status of her parents’ relationship and if she had her school yearbook with her. Sandoval said that should the officer be found negligent of his duty, he could be slapped with administrative sanctions based on civil service rules.
She also noted that it was no less than BI Commissioner Norman Tansingco who directly called the officer to explain his side of the story. Sandoval stressed that conducting secondary inspections in the immigration process is still necessary given the alarming number of Filipinos falling victim to human trafficking and illegal recruitment. She also clarified that yearbooks or diplomas are not required for travelers departing the country.