Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr. called on Transportation Secretary Emilio Abaya to hire more personnel to assist passengers going in and out of airports, especially at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
Marcos explained that with the expected influx of passengers during the Christmas holidays, airport personnel should be beefed up.
“Passengers have to contend with the monstrous traffic going in and out of our airports and they certainly don’t deserve this. That is why our airport officials need to make sure they don’t suffer more inconvenience anymore when they step into the airport. More personnel should be manning our airports especially the NAIA,” Marcos said.
The Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) expects passenger volume to go up by 10 percent on Christmas week from the 1.6 million arrivals and 1.4 million departures last year. This translates to at least 300,000 additional passengers.
Marcos stressed that while airport police and personnel are on maximum deployment from December 15 to January 5, they will not be enough to assist all passengers.
He pointed out that he has been receiving numerous complaints that not all gates in the airport terminals are open during peak hours and that only one baggage scanner is working to service those taking midnight flights, resulting in delays.
“I receive numerous complaints from passengers. I myself have experienced it. And it will only get worse if our airport officials continue to ignore the desperate pleas of our passengers. The way to solve this for now is for them to hire more personnel to man the gates so that more gates will be opened and more baggage scanners may be operated to service them,” the senator said.
Earlier, Sen. Grace Poe called for the sacking of NAIA General Manager Angelito Honrado for his alleged incompetence.
Poe said Honrado failed to fulfil his responsibilities because he was unable to stop Tanim Bala incidents
“Government servants should have integrity, competency and capability to do their jobs and take action if problems arise,” Poe said.
“It’s that simple. If you can’t do your job, we are 100 million people [here in the Philippines]. There will always be somebody who can do your job well,” she added.
Poe cited the case of Nanay Gloria, who was detained for two days for allegedly bringing ammunition in her luggage. The senator said Gloria was never given anything to eat during her entire detention.
Charges against Nanay Gloria were dropped when it was proven that she was a victim of the syndicate behind the bullet planting scam.