DFA brings ‘Passport on Wheels’ to Sultan Kudarat

A client took advantage of the mobile passporting activities of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) during the Bagong Pilipinas Serbisyo Fair held recently in Sultan Kudarat. Dubbed "Passport on Wheels," the DFA's two-day activity aimed at reaching out to as many people as possible in a bid to achieve its goal of providing people's easy access by bringing the agency's primary services to the forefront of communities. (Photo: PIA Region 12)

ISULAN, Sultan Kudarat (PIA) — The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has recently made its services easily accessible to residents of Sultan Kudarat through its “Passport on Wheels (POW),” serving at least 400 passport applications and renewals in two days.

“Passport on Wheels is our way of bringing consular services closer to Filipinos,” said Office of the Consular Affairs principal assistant Ana Angela Cabillan during the recently held Bagong Pilipinas Serbisyo Fair (BPSF) in Sultan Kudarat.

Kung ano po yung ginagawa natin sa consular offices and sa head office namin sa ASEANA, yun po ang dinala namin. Complete process po ‘yun except the printing, kasi doon po ‘yun sa facility,” Cabillan said.

[Whatever we do at the consular offices and at our head office in ASEANA is also what we bring here. It’s a complete process, except for the printing, because we do that at the facility.]

As expected, DFA's "Passport on Wheels" in Sultan Kudarat was flocked by a multitude of people who took advantage of its presence in the area. DFA General Santos City said they were able to serve some 400 passport applications and renewals during their two-day activity in support of the Bagong Pilipinas Serbisyo Fair of the Marcos administration. (Photo: PIA Region 12)

Cabillan highlighted that the Office of Sultan Kudarat First District Rep. Bai Rihan Sakaluran shouldered the passport fees of the first 100 clients.

“This is a big reprieve to residents, as express passport fees, including delivery and protection sleeve, cost around P1,400,” Cabilan noted.

According to DFA Consular Office General Santos City Head Eden Mae Patigan, they have been conducting mobile passport applications in the past, but this is the first time they were able to roll out the service again in Soccsksargen in over a decade.

“This one is a good indication po na ang DFA mismo lumalapit [that the DFA is really the one going closer] to bring its services to the people. Especially, alam natin na [we know that] some areas here are remote,” Patigan explained.

Georgy Anne Guerrero of the municipality of Lambayong, Sultan Kudarat, was one of the passport applicants who came at dawn to ensure that she would be catered to by the mobile passporting services of the DFA. (Photo: PIA Region 12)

Meanwhile, Georgy Anne Guerrero, a resident of Lambayong, was among the first to avail of the DFA services.

“I came as early as 5:00 a.m. to renew my passport because they announced that it would be on a first-come, first-served basis,” Guerrero disclosed.

Guerrero added that without the BPSF, she would really have to go to the DFA Consular Office in General Santos City to process her transaction, which entails additional expenses.

POW is a regular program of the DFA Passport Services Division, and local government units interested in bringing it to their localities are advised to send a letter of request or visit the nearest consular office for coordination. (ORVR – PIA Sultan Kudarat)

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