SAN ANTONIO, Saipan – At least 65 overseas Filipino workers are listed as “overstayers" or “illegal stayers" in the US Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, a new report released by the CNMI Department of Labor shows.
These OFWs represent 59 percent of the 110 total “overstayers" or those who have overstayed the immigration permission granted to them upon their entry into the CNMI for employment purposes.
Persons in an overstayer status are required to leave the commonwealth immediately.
“Persons who depart the Commonwealth voluntarily are eligible to return. Those who are deported are not eligible to return," Labor said.
There are some 10,000 OFWs and Filipino-Americans in the 14-island CNMI, whose capital — Saipan — is only about three hours away from Manila via direct flight.
The rest of the overstayers are from China, Korea, Thailand, Bangladesh and other Asian countries.
Permissions granted upon entry into the CNMI may be extended or the entry status may be changed under a number of different provisions of the Commonwealth law, but all extensions and changes must be documented and the applicable fees paid.
Labor said if the necessary applications and supporting documents have not been correctly completed, filled, or recorded, a name may appear in overstayer status although an extension may have been granted upon completion or recording of the necessary documentation.
Foreign workers whose names are on the Labor list but have current status allowing them to be in the CNMI are asked to report to Labor’s Division of Administration Hearing Office no later than Aug. 28, 2009, to correct the records. - GMANews.TV