• Aquino set to check airport, bus depot

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    President Benigno Aquino 3rd is set to make the rounds of major terminals on Thursday to ensure that proper security measures are put in place for the annual observance of All Saints’ and All Souls’ days.

    In a statement, Palace spokesman Edwin Lacierda said that the President will personally inspect terminals and other transport hubs as part of the operations, along with other Cabinet officials.

    He assured that all government agencies concerned have been doing the necessary preparations for a peaceful and orderly celebration.

    “President Aquino has directed all pertinent agencies to ensure the safety and convenience of the commuting public in the coming Undas weekend,” he added

    According to Lacierda, the Philippine National Police “remains on alert to ensure the security of transport hubs and cemeteries” that are expected to draw huge crowds on November 1 and 2.

    The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, he said, has deployed additional units to help ease the flow of traffic, while the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) has launched Oplan Ligtas Biyahe: Undas 2013, “a centralized plan to ensure access to convenient, affordable, reliable, efficient, safe, and secure transportation.”

    The Oplan Ligtas Biyahe, he said, started during the October 28 Barangay Elections, and will continue until the All Saints and All Souls Day holidays.

    As part of campaign, Lacierda said that the Civil Aeronautics Board is also conducting monitoring activities and has installed help desks in all four NAIA terminals, along with Documentation and Ground Assistance roving teams to address passenger concerns and verify flight statuses.

    “This is in tandem with CAAP’s [Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines’] increased frequency of airworthiness inspections nationwide,” he added

    The Palace official, meanwhile, said that air passengers may text 0917-TEXNAIA (0917-8396242) for information as regards statuses of flights.

    The riding public, on one hand, may also call the DOTC Action Center Hotline at (02)789-0-DOTC for their concerns, Lacierda said. CATHERINE S. VALENTE

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