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15 passengers denied entry at Philippines airport over vaccine certificates

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Ninoy Aquino International Airport, Manila, Phillippines | Photo via Sinx

Following its reopening of borders to fully-vaccinated visitors last week, the Philippines immigration reportedly denied entry to 15 Malaysians due to their vaccination in Malaysia yesterday. Their passports are reportedly being held and they will be deported from the Manila Ninoy Aquino International Airport tomorrow.

A passenger told The Star reporters that the Philippines immigration officials did not accept the Malaysian digital vaccine certificate. The vaccine certificate is on the MySejahtera smartphone application and authorities in the Philippines said it was not valid proof of vaccination, the passenger said.

He continued that they were being forced to sleep on benches or the airport floor since no hotels were available. But those on the same flight from Kuala Lumpur who had been vaccinated in Singapore or the UK were allowed entry. The immigration officers advised them that they needed to get vaccinated in another country with a World Health Organisation International Certificate of Vaccination.

The Malaysian Ambassador to the Philippines personally came to see the 15 stranded passengers, and they were grateful that he was doing his best to assist them, according to them. The Malaysian Embassy in the Philippines has sent the appeal to the Philippine Foreign Affairs Agency, which had not responded as of reporting time.

One passenger said they had tried their best to negotiate with immigration, but had no luck. They expressed frustration that they hadn’t been let into the country and were concerned about being deported, which would be a great disappointment and a significant setback after travelling so far.

“We pray that the Malaysian government can support us in gaining entry into the Philippines.”

SOURCE: The Star

 

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