Passport renewal woes
If you are renewing your passport, you do not need to secure an appointment if you are an overseas worker, senior citizen, person with disability, single parent, pregnant woman and minor (7 years old and below).
But if you are none of those listed, you are out of luck. Simply put, no service is available for you at any office of the Department of Foreign Affairs in Metro Manila.
I found this out from trying to renew my soon-to-expire passport for almost two months now. I tried setting an appointment at the Aseana office, SM Megamall or Alabang, but no luck. I even went to the Aseana office and was told that slots would be available for July, but I still needed to apply online.
That was a month ago, and still no slots have opened up. The Aseana phone number (556-0000) has even stopped taking calls, and when it does, it goes on an endless loop with nobody picking up. If somebody ever does, you will be given the whole charade of having to do everything online and waiting until new slots open.
The Facebook page that the Department of Foreign Affairs recommended where citizens could air concerns and issues has been inactive. Even the e-mail they provided ([email protected]) has been “unable to receive mail” as the “address couldn’t be found.”
What is causing the problems? Why is this government department not working, or seems to have malfunctioned? There seems to be nobody in the DFA addressing these issues. I am only one person; I am sure there are many other people trying to renew or apply for a passport in vain.
JOSE SANTAMARIA, [email protected]m
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