PH government terminating contract with luggage handlers at NAIA for involvement in baggage pilferage

By Benjie Vergara

The Ninoy Aquino International Airport ©

THE government will not renew its contract with Miascor Aviation Services to service the Ninoy Aquino International Airport following a decision of President Rodrigo Duterte to terminate the agreement after learning that several of its employees were involved in a number of baggage pilfering incident at the country’s premier airport which brought shame to the country.

This was learned Friday in a joint statement issued by the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA).

After careful evaluation of facts surrounding an incident of baggage pilferage involving Miascor’s employees, and in line with the clear directive of President Rodrigo Duterte for Miascor’s contract to be terminated, the DOTr denies the appeal of Miascor, and stands firm in its decision not to renew the company’s contract with the MIAA beyond April 2018,” the DOTr and the MIAA said.

Moreover, the MIAA added that “the President has also said that he will not entertain any appeal from Miascor Aviation Services.”

The statement was apparently in response to an appeal letter sent by the 4,000-strong Miascor employees to Pres. Duterte seeking a reconsideration of his decision to abrogate the government’s contract with Miascor as it will affect not only them but their families.

Two months ago, a returning Filipino worker claimed his luggage was pilfered at Clark International Airport. Five Miascor employees were suspended and placed under investigation in connection with the case.

But what appears to have broken the camel’s back, so to speak, was when in August 2016, four employees of the said company were arrested for the theft of pieces of jewelry owned by the wife of Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, who was accompanying her husband in an official visit to the country.

Monreal said the pilferers were obviously in cahoots with other airport employees.

However, Miascor training and development manager Ritchell Bernardo said they are still hoping President Duterte will soften his stance against Miascor and change his mind.

It is unfortunate that the actions of six erring employees in Clark International Airport have negatively impacted the company,” Bernardo said.

Benjie Vergara
A veteran reporter covering the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila. He is currently writing for Manila Times, the Philippines' oldest newspaper.

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