• Tacloban airport mess


    IF there is one city in this country of indecent airport facilities that deserves a respectable airport, it is Tacloban. After all that typhoon Yolanda did in Leyte including blowing the Tacloban airport away, it is only just and meritorious that the DOTC replace the facilities that were there and bring them a level up.

    But it is not so. I went to Tacloban about six months after Yolanda rampaged through Tacloban and was met with a roofless and waterless facility that nevertheless was pretty busy with the comings and goings of relatives, international institution personnel, and non-governmental organizations trying to contribute their bit to help put Leyte back on its feet. I expected that the next time I came back I would see a quantum leap forward, or maybe a modest step up in comfort and convenience.

    No such thing. I was there last week but while the terminal has a roof, that is about it. It is the same size when it should have been enlarged for the number of flights and people that come through daily. There are not enough seats for the number of passengers or enough space for the ground personnel who have to work at the airport constrained into a cramped corner

    Would you believe that in the restrooms they only have two stalls for the big number of passengers that have to line up to get to use them? You would think that if they bothered to put a roof they could bother to enlarge the space and come up with something comfortable like proper bathrooms. These would have been minimal improvements but not even that has been done.

    And, of course, there was no airconditioning. Think of getting there at 4 p.m. for a 5:30 p.m. fight while the sun beats down, every seat is taken, and it is, in fact, standing room while the put-upon airline counter clerks are attending to numerous passengers checking in, asking questions, looking for somewhere to place themselves among the wall-to-wall people. One wonders how these employees can cope daily with the conditions that they work with.

    Everything was in your face including two security checks within meters of each other, the luggage conveyor belt next to the gates and using space that should have been used for seats, a few pop up stores in what should have been free passage corridors, lines at the bathrooms, crowds along the counters and everyone sweating it out as though in a sauna. What nitwit is responsible for this travesty of an airport?

    As a mere put-upon passenger I was eventually told (because of course I was not privy to see and experience it), that there was actually a VIP facility nearby constructed for the Pope’s visit last January but which has since been used only for VIPs. So probably that is where the DOTC muck-a-mucks are brought so as not to experience the hellhole that is right there and known to all as the Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport. Really, Daniel Z. Romualdez must be turning in his grave for the use of his name for this disgraceful facility.

    You would think that if they had the time and made the effort to construct a VIP facility, they could have with a little more effort, a bit more time and some compassion and concern for Tacloban airport passengers, just done so much more to make things comfortable and decent while at it.

    I can guess what Pope Francis would think had he seen what I am talking about and then been ushered into the VIP facility. As someone muttered when I bumped into her at the decidedly un-VIP facility, “This is the Third World.” Frankly, I would say, “Fourth World.”

    I guess that is the story of the utter lack of decent public facilities for the traveling public, and in this case a public that has suffered enough with Yolanda. Let us not even talk about the tourists that this country supposedly is trying to attract.

    I am not accepting budget cuts as excuses, or time constraints or whatever else they come up with to explain the Tacloban airport mess. It is an intolerable experience that has no rhyme or reason.


    Please follow our commenting guidelines.


    1. reynante benusa on

      the government is a mess itself,,nothing more to be expected from them..the public is suffering..naturingan na malalaking tao sa lipunan,,pero kung mg isip mga utak-kuto.// bakit hindi nalang sila mgtulungan pagandahin mga infra ng pilipinas..nang sa ganon ay mapakinabangan naman sila..kaya nga tinawag silang public servants,para magsilbi,gawin ang nararapat para sa public,hindi yong puro awaypulitika,kahambugan sa pwesto….at mga opurtunista

    2. adam_d_langgam on

      the airports in iloilo, bacolod, cdo and laoag were renovated and can even handle international flights. oh wait, these airports were constructed by the “corrupt” gloria administration.

      what did the daang matuwid accomplish? wake me up if you can point to one.

      • adam_d_langgam on

        ooops .. i thought only pdi and philstar practice censorship. pati pala manila times wala din beklog …

      • sa totoo lang wala! as in itlog, bunay, egg, ebon, betlog and all equivalent terms in all languages of the world! not surprising when we have a leadership that is an insult to the word itself!

    3. the airport is named after a romualdez, and the president is an aquino. . . how about it, prexy-hopeful mar?

      • mar’s words will haunt his campaign everywhere he goes in the whole archipelago! he probably does not not know it but we the people of eastern visayas (leyte, samar & biliran & maripipi islands) have relatives scattered all throughout the 7107 islands of this whole archipelago, and so our influence lines (as we are wont to say in engineering) are not confined to a single region! he can only win through sheer cheating and manipulation of election results!

    4. Tacloban Aiport, as the SM slogan goes, ” GOT IT ALL FOR YOU!”

      President B.S. Aquino 3rd and his past and present DoTC secretaries deserve to be executed by firing squad.

      Height of Hypcrisy, Vicdictiveness & Incompetence.

    5. Wait na lang mga leyteno at samarnon pag nakabalik sa pwesto ang Marcos Romualdez sa tamang panahon tacloban will rise again

    6. Freding Labuyot on

      Tacloban Airport is being managed by CAAP not by the LGU. There’s no bright future for this airport in this administration because there is an “R” on DZR Airport. That is why the President proposes to build an airport on Palo (town next to Tacloban) to eradicate the “R” on its name-JUST A SIMPLE REASON.

    7. Sec Mar said kung nalaman ko may nagawa sana ako o may nagawa ba ako. Napakaraming Kapalpakan na ang nalaman mo, ang tanong may ginawa ka
      na ba? Gaya ng malaman mo na sinadyang hindi ipaalam sayo at kay gen.
      espina ang SAF operation, may ginawa kaba? wala. Nakita mo at nalaman ang
      kapalpakan ng bff mo si sec abaya sa mrt scam, LTO mess, may nagawa kaba?
      wala, sa kapalpakan ni gen. purisima sa pnp, may ginawa kaba, WALA.
      patuloy mo. ngeek.

    8. Madam, politics got into the pictures. prior to yolanda, DZR airport got nearly 1B for renovation and improvement. but this was “collared” by Abad to DAP. After yolanda, pnoy was so “allergic” of Tacloban because of the Romualdezes. pnoy planned to relocate the airport of palo, leyte the kingdom of the petillas. we taclobanons know that pnoy does not like the Romualdezes. right now there are less than 50 Romualdezes in Tacloban. if this administration has grey matter in their heads, why let the 200,000 plus Taclobanons suffer. there must something wrong with pnoy’s EQ. at any rate, thank you Madam Ongpin for bringing out the real situation of the DZR airport.

    9. What can Mrs Ongpin expect from Aquino who is vindictive? Aquino will never pay for the airport’s rehabilitation. He hates Tacloban because he associates it with Imelda. He can’t see that the residents are Filipinos and his constituents first and foremost.

    10. The state of Tacloban airport is another proof of “remember you are a Ramuladez and the president is an Aquino” diatribe of roxas. This is how the govt exacts it’s vengeance to it’s perceived enemies. Also another reason is the Petillas who are abnoy’s allies wants to move the airport to Palo, where the Petillas have their power base. Ikot’s mother is the local mayor, but in all of this the present governor who is also a Petilla (Ikot’s brother) seems to be not bothered at all about the state of Tacloban airport. I guess as users we just have to bear and grin even after the govt charges us with fees to use the decrepit facility.