Thursday, June 17, 2010

Day 168: Bureaucracy

The girls and I accompanied hubby to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) this morning to get a copy of his clearance. A process that should normally take about an hour to two tops turned into nearly a whole day affair. We were there before 8:00 am and a significant crowd already awaited us. Instead of letting each applicant go through the entire process at once (from application, payment, photo capture, finger printing to releasing), the government agency did each step in batches of 10. After application and filling up of forms, 10 people were asked to line up to go up the stairs and pay the cashier then back down to wait. This happened for about 6 or 7 batches. It was already past 10:00 am and hubby's name hasn't been called yet for photo capture! What the?!?! And when new faces were being called, we suspected they skipped the order that the batches were initially called. It was a hot day and the girls were already getting cranky so hubby said we should just go him and leave him there to finish everything. 

At around half past 11:00, hubby arrived home frustrated because he was told to just go back after lunch as it was already nearing lunch break. At that point, he still hasn't had his photo taken. Four hours of waiting? That ain't cute! He went back around 1:30 in the afternoon and finally came home with his clearance on hand shortly before 4:00. That's a total of more than 6 hours in a day wasted in useless waiting. Had the agency taken a one person, one sweep of the process approach, it would probably make the waiting time way shorter and would not leave the applicants exhausted from going up and down the stairs 3x throughout the entire process. Imagine, each person had to wait after each small process when it could easily just be a one-time waiting when he's done with the entire process.

Most of the people who were there were probably first time applicants seeking employment and others just sneaking out from school or work to get their clearance. All of them ended up spending most of their day waiting and probably suffered income loss or absence from school. What should only take a small fraction of time during a person's lunch hour took a day. Now, there's something seriously wrong with how NBI-CARAGA is doing its clearance process. I hope its management realizes this problem and be able to do the necessary steps in improving how they do things to better serve the public.

1 comment:

  1. Wait till you have your passport renewed at the "new" DFA. Consider yourself warned. :)