DUBAI: An official of the UAE’s General Directorate for Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) in Dubai has disclosed that they have a profiling method in place when reviewing applications for residence or visit visa, which determines approval or rejection.
In an interview during the recent Fraud Conference Middle East, Capt. Mohammed Issa Al Marri, GDRFA head of performance audit, said continuous violations of the visit or residence visa provisions are red flags, meaning the application will consequently be subjected to closer scrutiny and review.
“We have an approach in GDRFA which checks the visas and can build a profile on the applicant,” Al Marri told this blogger.
He said the agency classifies the applications into categories.
He explained: “If a person violates the visa for the first time by overstaying because he might have a medical issue, so then we need to judge.
“We need first to observe what is the reason for violating and then upon that we decide. This is an approach by which the officers are working in.”
He further explained that an applicant, who had repeatedly overstayed and then applied again for a residence visa after finding an employer who would hire him, will be asked why he had not left the country when his visa expired.
“If you have a residence permit for the last 15 years and all of them were violated and you re-apply for another visa, you might be asked why you overstayed. Ok, you say the first time, you had a case in court; the second time, you had a case with your employer; the third time you had a medical issue; the fourth time, your passport was released late during renewal.
“These are all reasons that intervene in why your application will be approved or rejected,” Al Marri said.
Larry Esguerra, travel manager at MPQ Tourism, a travel agency that processes visas, said there are two main reasons why visa applications are being rejected by GDRFA: “May mga kinasuhan ng dating employer or may loan na hindi nabayaran.”
Cases filed by employers, he said, usually include absconding and theft, common among runaways who, officials said, have either figured in misunderstandings with, or were allegedly subjected to abuse by, their employers.
Credit card issues are also rampant where card holders fail to keep up with ensuing interests after failing to make payments on time.
Fraud Conference Middle East was held at Madinat Jumeirah from Feb 23 to 25, spearheaded by GDRFA.