By Benjie Lim Vergara
AIRPORT General Manager Ed Monreal said that the Manila International Airport Authority is committed to work with the United States Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to boost security measures for the protection of passengers.
“We were informed by the TSA about their observations regarding procedures, processes, equipment and personnel posting at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) following an assessment period from September 26 to December 5 this year during which time the MIAA and the Office for Transportation Security (OTS) have implemented measures to rectify and make improvements on security issues that were identified,” Monreal said in a recent press statement.
He said that new background checks procedures for newly-hired airport personnel will include neighborhood and NICA (National Intelligence Coordinating Agency) checks for those implementing security control, and submission of new NBI clearances for all MIAA access pass holders will be required.
The airport security chief said that strict measures are being put in place in terms of personnel manning security checkpoints.
In case of a delinquency report, the concerned personnel will be immediately pulled out from the line and will undergo retraining before being sent back on line. But of a second delinquency incident occurs, then the personnel will be suspended or fired.
Monreal added that the procurement for the needed equipment such as walk through metal detectors, x-ray machines and alarm systems are already ongoing in compliance with government rules and procedures.
“Procurement for the necessary equipment are ongoing, but we need to understand that we cannot have these instantly. These are not items off the shelves, and manufacturing time after we place the orders may take six months. But as instructed by DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade, we will make sure there will be no delays in the process so we can make use of these equipment within 2019,” Monreal said.
Monreal, at the same time, disclosed that the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) had furnished the MIAA and OTS copies of its latest security audit findings saying that both agencies satisfactorily complied with ICAO standards with some comments and suggestions on implementing the corrective action plan crafted by said government agencies.