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    Airlines told to expedite transfer of luggage at PH airport

    December 15th, 2017


    DUE to the mounting complaints about the delay in retrieving checked-in luggage, Manila International Airport Authority General Manager Ed Monreal directed all airline ground handlers to expedite the unloading of passengers’ luggage from the aircraft.

    Monreal said has recently been receiving numerous complaints from incoming passengers on the delayed retrieval of their checked-in luggage from the baggage carousel. He said the delay is causing congestion at the passenger terminal’s arrival conveyor area.

    To avoid or to minimize congestion, Monreal said ground equipment must be positioned at the aircraft bay staging area thirty minutes before the flight arrival for immediate transfer of checked-in baggage to the ramp conveyor system.

    First baggage/luggage must be at the conveyor belt within twelve minutes after the aircraft has parked at the designated parking bay and must be loaded to the conveyor belt forty minutes after the aircraft has parked.

    He added that as courtesy and for everyone’s safety within the baggage carousel, all passengers should be advised to kindly stand behind the yellow line for an orderly retrieval of luggage.

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    PH immigration deports 47 Koreans fugitives

    December 14th, 2017

    FORTY seven Korean nationals who are wanted in their country for various offenses were deported, the Bureau of Immigration at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport said on Thursday.

    BI Port Operations Division Chief Marc Red Mariñas said the deportees boarded Jeju Air flight 7C2382 escorted by hundred Korean Interpol after they were formally turned over to Korean authorities.

    According to Mariñas, the deportation was part of the process of decongesting the immigration jail from foreign inmates. He further revealed that said the BI has also scheduled the deportation of another fugitive who is wanted in United Kingdom (UK) for rape charges.

    British authorities sought the help of the Philippine immigration for the arrest of Mark Christopher Wyatt who was convicted in a British court but fled the UK in violation of his parole or for breaching a supervision order and notification requirements.

    Wyatt was arrested by the bureau’s fugitive search unit at his home in Camiling, Tarlac, Mariñas said.

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    PH airport authority apologizes for lack of AC at Ninoy Aquino International Airport

    November 29th, 2017

    NAIA Terminal 3 ©

    THE Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) on Wednesday apologized to the public for the inconvenience they suffered after parts of the air conditioning system at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3 went out.

    We are experiencing warm temperature in some parts of NAIA Terminal 3 due to the ongoing repair of our central air-conditioning system. We apologize for the inconvenience,” MIAA General Manager Eddie Monreal said.

    Monreal explained that the problem of air-conditioning system at the NAIA Terminal 3 had already been addressed, however, it will take more time to fully resolve the issue since the purchase for some of its parts, including a brand-new air conditioning unit, passes through a law mandated bidding process.

    Monreal noted that the MIAA already ordered new ones and it is in the process of procuring stand-alone air-conditioning units to ensure that temperature at the affected areas is maintained at a comfortable level. He added that the MIAA understands how inconvenient it is to endure warm temperature inside the terminal.

    Our engineering team is on top of the situation and is doing all it can to improve the cooling system at the affected areas,” Monreal stressed

    It will be recalled that before Monreal took over the airport helm last year, the air-conditioning system of Terminal 3 is already in a bad condition.

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    More cash for senior citizen residents of Taguig City

    November 25th, 2017

    Taguig City Hall. Image ©

    EFFECTIVE next year, senior citizen residents of Taguig City will receive an increase in their birthday cash gift from the city government.

    This developed after the Taguig City council has passed an ordinance mandating such an increase to be effective beginning January 1 next year.

    Under Ordinance No. 25 Series of 2017, the senior citizen residents of Taguig City, depending on their respective age brackets – 60 to 69, 70 to 79 or 80 and above – will now receive PhP3,000, PhP4,000 and PhP5,000 cash gift from the city government.

    Next year’s cash gift increase is the second since the local city council made mandatory, through City Ordinance No. 09, the distribution of P500 monetary gifts to each of Taguig’s elderly on their birthdays in 2008.

    In 2013, the local council also adjusted each senior citizen’s birthday cash gift to P1,000.

    “In Taguig, we believe that if we have enough resources and capability to provide better services to the people then we do it,” said Taguig City Mayor Lani Cayetano curing the recent flag raising ceremony at the city hall grounds.

    Explaining the rationale behind the increase, Cayetano said she wants “our second parents to feel that they are part of a city government which includes them as one of its priorities since we understand the medical needs and expenses that come with old age.”

    Eligible for the birthday cash gift are senior citizens who are residents of Taguig for a minimum of five years and are registered voters of the city.

    To claim the birthday cash gift, an elderly resident should present his or her Senior Citizen ID card and signed photocopy of the said ID before the Office for Senior Citizen Affairs (OSCA) at the city hall for processing.

    If for whatever reason, except death, an elderly could not personally claim the give, a representative could do so provided that the representation could present an authorization letter, the senior citizen ID card of the beneficiary and a photocopy of the representative’s valid ID.

    The elderly is always a priority under Mayor Cayetano’s administration.

    Aside from the birthday cash gift, Taguigeño senior citizens are given a PhP1,500 social pension which is distributed quarterly.

    In addition to these benefits, Taguigeño senior citizens who reaches the age of 100 shall receive PhP100,000 cash gift from the city government on top of all other allowable monetary benefits.

    In Taguig, there is also a house-to-house delivery of free maintenance medicines for those with diabetes, high blood and asthma. They can also avail of the free eye checkups and prescription glasses under the Oplan Linaw program of the local government.

    Moreover, a home care service, dubbed TLC Home Care Service, which allows elderly residents to experience free nursing services at the comfort of their own homes is also being implemented in Taguig.

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    Longer contract for contractual Ninoy Aquino International Airport personnel effective next month

    November 23rd, 2017

    Some of the more than 1,000 contractual NAIA personnel. Image ©

    BEGINNING December 16, all contractual personnel working at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport will be given a three-year contract and better benefits by their respective employment agencies as part of the agreement between the Manila International Airport and the service providers who won the right to work on the Philippines premier airport.

    Consequently, some 1,057 job order personnel hired as building attendants on the four NAIA terminals are now entitled starting next month to receive a 13th month pay, health benefits and Social Security System (SSS) contribution next month, said MIAA General Manager Ed Monreal.

    Monreal explained that the move is “in line” with President Rodrigo Duterte’s desire to end the “endo” system especially in the government agencies.

    Last October, the MIAA conducted a bidding for the maintenance of the airport’s terminals through an open competitive procedures where three different winning bidders agreed to give the contractual personnel what is due them.

    Part of the agreement calls for the workers to be employed continuously for three years, and that their contract should be renewable every three years, unless the worker has serious violation during employment or is a habitual absentee.

    Monreal also pointed out that under the new contract, no age limit was set where able-bodied senior workers can work. The winning bidders were also advised to consider workers with violations for at least six months more of employment before letting them go.

    There are at least 356 building attendants working at NAIA’s Terminal 1, 272 in Terminal 2, 372 Terminal 3 and 57 in Terminal 4 – 272, at NAIA terminal 3 – 372, while in terminal 4 – 57 for a total of 1,057 personnel. Most of the building attendants are with the janitorial services for more than 10 years while some of them said they spend 15 years cleaning the toilets of NAIA.

    The NAIA Terminal 1 has 247 toilets, 47 in Terminal 2, 100 in Terminal 3, and 24 in Terminal 4.

    Alma Nival, one of the job order personnel at NAIA whose working status was for temporary projects or activities, welcome the “good opportunities” given them by MIAA.

    At least we are assured of employment for three years and the contract is renewable while the company exists and there will be 13th month pay, medical benefits and SSS,” Nival said in Filipino.


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    Suspected drug mule nabbed at Manila’s NAIA

    November 14th, 2017

    Ninoy Aquino International Airport. Image ©

    IN A bid to avoid detection and arrest at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila, a suspected Colombian drug mule on Sunday swallowed 79 pellets with what are believed to be cocaine with an estimated street value of PhP8.8 million.

    Nevertheless, 67-year old suspect, Alberto Pedroza Quijano, was still arrested by members of the Airport Drug Interdiction Task Force Group (ADITFG) at the NAIA Terminal 3 following a tip from the United States government that he would be bringing in the illegal drugs into the country.

    Quijano arrived in the country on board an Emirate Airline Flight EK 332 that flew in from Dubai.
    The ADITFG said the suspect was immediately brought to the Pasay General Hospital where he underwent x-ray medical scanning procedure. Attending hospital staff later found rubber pellets in his stomach.

    The task force also said that it took more than 24 hours before the medical staff excrete the rubber pellets from the suspect. The substance later was brought to the PDEA laboratory for examination, while Quijano underwent drug test.

    According to the task force, what Quijano did to avoid detection and arrest is typical for a drug mule. It added that after swallowing the contraband, the mule would then transport his illegal cargo across borders and upon reaching their destination, the cargo is retrieved.

    A drug courier can swallow up to 120 balloons and during their journey, they take medication to inhibit bowel movement. Once they have reached their destination, they are fed laxatives and the balloons pass through their bodies, authorities said.

    In December 2015, a Venezuelan drug mule was caught with more than a kilogram of cocaine. Andres Rodriguez, 39, arrived from Abu Dhabi on board a Philippine Airlines PR657. He ingested 92 pellets of cocaine.

    Last year, airport authorities made at least 15 arrests against suspected foreign drug couriers.

    Manila International Airport Authority General Manager Ed Monreal said that they are sending strong message to drug syndicates that the “law enforcement agencies are joining hands to fight their way to a drug free country in order to provide a safe environment that is conducive for development.”

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    Security augmented at Manila’s international airport for the ASEAN summit

    November 9th, 2017

    The Ninoy Aquino International Airport ©

    PHILIPPINE airport authorities have intensified security at the country’s premier airport in anticipation of the arrival of seven world leaders who will attend the 31st Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit in Manila.

    Manila International Airport Authority Manager Ed Monreal said among the measures taken are the augmentation of security personnel at checkpoints leading to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport complex and the deployment of more bomb sniffing canines.

    Cops on patrol as security at NAIA was heightened ©

    He added that heads of security, terminal managers and specially trained policemen were also situated in different strategic areas of the airport complex to ensure the safety of the arriving dignitaries and the people working at, and using the airport.

    Among those expected to arrive for the ASEAN summit are: United States President Donald Trump, China’s Premier Xi Jinping, Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in, India’s President Ram Nath Kovind, Brunei’s Sultan Hassana Bolkiah and Singapore’s President Halimah Yacob.

    Meanwhile, international and local airlines operating at the NAIA terminals urged their clients traveling this week, until up to November 15, to allot sufficient time going to the airport to avoid missing their flights. They added that this is due to the anticipated more than normal heavy traffic brought about by road closures in connection with the upcoming ASEAN summit.

    Airline officials also advised air travelers to come early to check in, go through security and immigration checks, and process pre-departure requirements at the airport, to avoid long queues at the check-in counters.

    International and domestic check-in counters are open three hours before the scheduled time of departure and four hours for international flights while all check-in counters close 45 minutes before the scheduled time of flights except those exiting the Middle East (one hour) and Shanghai (50 minutes).


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    PH civil aviation authorities warned of a dangerous boom crane near the approach of Davao International Airport

    October 26th, 2017

    Francisco Bangoy International Airport (Davao International Airport) Image © Pinas Muna

    THE Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines on Wednesday sought the assistance of the Davao City government in connection with a boom crane that obstructs the approach and departure of airplanes from the nearby Francisco Bangoy International Airport due to its height.

    This was learned after the CAAP informed the local city government about the dangers that the boom crane over the PhP 3.1 billion worth Aeon Towers posed to approaching and departing aircraft from the city’s airport.

    According to CAAP Spokesperson Eric Apolonio, the obstruction caused by the boom crane also prompted the CAAP to issue a Notice-To-Airmen (Notam) limiting airport’s Runway 23 to landing only and Runway 05 was limited to takeoff procedures.

    At the same time, the CAAP said it summoned the building developer, the FTC Group of Companies Corp., and have it explained why they did not obtain clearance for the use of boom crane although they obtained height clearance for the construction of the tower building from the city government.

    The presence of high boom crane, which is approximately 250 meters in angle from the right side of airport’s final approach, has prompted the city government of Davao to prepare all legal remedies in case the Aeon Towers developer does not remove the airplane flight hazard construction equipment as it promised.

    Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte Carpio reportedly threatened to shut down the construction of the 33-storey Aeon Tower condominium, the tallest building and the tallest skyscraper in Mindanao, should it fail to take down the boom crane.

    Apolonio said FTC Group of Companies informed the CAAP that they would need a few days to remove the equipment.

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    Filipino IT experts set to fly to Japan to participate in the 2017 Asian Entrepreneurship Award.

    October 25th, 2017

    Young IT experts of Mr. Geek Mobile Solution Inc., (from L-R) Romeo Sustiguer Jr, President; Elise tupas Mello, Senior Sales Manager; Rowinner G. Bautista, Chairman and CEO; and Eduardo Maghanoy, Chief Project Officer. Photo © Benjie Vergara

    EXPERTS from a newly established Filipino Internet Technology company will vie for global recognition and acclaim at Asian Entrepreneurship Award 2017 in Chiba, Japan.

    IT experts from Mr. Geek Mobile Solutions, Inc. led by its Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Rowinner G. Bautista, President Romeo Sustiguer, Jr. Senior Sales Manager Elise Tupas Mello and Chief Project Officer Eduardo V. Maghanoy flew to the Land of the Rising Sun via the Philippine Airlines on Wednesday to join with 21 other companies from all around Asia who will compete for the prestigious award.

    The group represents the lone Filipino company to compete in the three day event (Oct. 25 to 27).

    “By using MyStart-Apps, Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs)will now have the ability to create decent, high quality and fully customizable mobile app through a user-friendly platform in less than 30 minutes and is absolutely free. This will enable them to save on cost of development and allocate their budget to other more essential needs in running their business,” Bautista said.

    The MyStart-Apps had a soft launch last year at the SMX Mall of Asia but this will be followed by a grand launching in December.

    Moreover, Bautista said by building one’s business on MyStart-Apps allows promising start ups to build their business and provide more value to their brand.

    With MyStart-Apps, the business can now communicate directly to their customers by sending notices, updates and even advertisements to customers’ digital devices, particularly smart phones powered by either Android or iOS.

    “As a young tech start-up company, it had always been our dream to be recognized internationally as an app developer from the Philippines and make the country proud. But more than that, as a former MSME, our mission is to help other local MSMEs to achieve their greatest potential ad contribute to the growth of the Philippine economy,” Bautista said.

    The participants will be judged based on innovativeness, commercial viability and social impact of the business, and its potential to expand and bring changes to the global economy and society. They will also be judged based on business performance with focus on competitive advantages, management team, strategic vision, and communication capabilities that include presentation skills.

    Mr. Geek Mobile Solutions, Inc is part of the Mr. Group Capital Holdings, Inc. or Mr. Group of Companies (MGC).

    MGC is an investor firm in the Philippines, with several business units that offer various platforms that bridge people with the passion to start and succeed in their chosen enterprise, and those who want to invest in high-return ventures with least exposure to much risk, according to Bautista.

    The Asian Entrepreneurship Award 2017, which will be held from October 25 to 27, at the Kashiwa-no-ha Open Innovation Lab in Kahiwa City; will give cash prize, free use of office in Japan and capitalization to the company who will be voted as winner.

    The prestigious award, Bautista said, will be watched by hundreds venture capitalists around the globe.

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    PH’ NAIA rescue teams passed CREX with flying colors

    October 19th, 2017

    TO ENSURE the proficiency of its rescue teams in responding to emergency situations, the Manila International Airport Authority on Thursday held the 2017 Crash and Rescue Exercise which simulated an airplane crash and passenger rescue in the country’s premier airport.

    According to MIAA General Manager Ed Monreal, last Thursday’s exercise assumed that a Clark-bound plane carrying 75 passengers and six crew on board has encountered engine trouble while takeoff and crashed at the NAIA’s Runway 13 and burst into flames. The exercise showed how the team put off the fire using a chemical foam and rescue the stricken passengers.

    YouTube Video courtesy: DOTr

    He said the exercise, which is held every two years in compliance with the International Civil Aviation Organization’s Suggested and Recommended Practices (ICAO-SARPS), showed that the NAIA responded well beyond the time required by ICAO.

    Monreal said the minimum response time of NAIA should be within five minutes but last Thursday exercise showed that the responders arrived at the crash site from the NAIA’s Fire and Rescue building in only two minutes, way beyond the time requirements set by ICAO.

    At the same time, Monreal said fire and rescue teams from different fire stations outside the NAIA also volunteered to participate during the exercise.

    Among those who witnessed Thursday’s CREX were the different government and private agencies, including military units, Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA), Pasay City local government, Office for Transportation Security, and Department of Transportation.

    Meanwhile, the Monreal disclosed that the MIAA has in its lists a fleet of nine fire trucks, each with the capacity of carrying at least 3,000 gallons of water or an aggregate capacity of 15,000 gallons of water, aside from 500 pounds of dry chemicals each fire truck carries.

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    PH’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport no longer one of the world’s worst

    October 18th, 2017

    The Ninoy Aquino International Airport ©

    THE reforms made at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport have finally bore fruit as it is now no longer considered as one of the world’s top 20 worst airports.

    According to the Manila Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) on Wednesday, the latest survey of the travel website “The Guide To Sleeping In Airports” published on October 15, no longer includes the country’s premier airport as among the 20 worst airports in the world.

    Moreover, the NAIA is also no longer included in the list of the top five worst airports in Asia of the same travel website.

    (Read More:

    MIAA General Manager Ed Monreal said that among the reforms implemented during the Duterte administration were the restriction on general aviation to prioritize commercial flights and reduce flight delays.

    The imposition of the five-minute rule (where pilots who declare they are ready to take off must depart within the prescribe time or they would be put back at the back of the queue) to reduce flight delays and instill discipline among airlines.

    The construction of Rapid Exit Taxiways to allow an aircraft to leave the runway at higher speed and increase flight movements; provision of cleaner toilets, additional seats, free WiFi, and well-wishers’ area.

    Regular taxis (white taxis) were also allowed to queue and pick-up passengers at designated points in NAIA terminals to address shortage of taxi units servicing passengers.

    “We are happy to hear the recent development. However, the bigger challenge now is on how we can maintain or even surpass this achievement. We are only good as the last race. The task ahead is enormous, we are wishing to be part of the list of best airports in the future,” Monreal stressed.

    In the past, NAIA has consistently made the list of world’s worst airports where travelers rate airports based on their overall airport experience.

    Some of the traveler’s complaints are long queues, broken toilets and air-conditioning units, as well as dishonest taxi pricing and limited public transport options have constantly plagued the NAIA thus earned the “world’s worst airport” title from 2011 to 2013.

    In 2014, it landed in the 4th place. It was not included in the top 10 worst airports in the world in 2015, but landed 8th worst airport in Asia.

    The October 2016 survey where NAIA landed 5th place as world’s worst airports was attributed to the issue of “laglag-bala,” which was among the complaint of travelers especially overseas Filipino workers, but was later addressed after the term of the Aquino administration.

    Meanwhile, four Philippine airports have again joined the list of the top 25 best airports in Asia for this year — Iloilo International Airport, Mactan-Cebu International Airport, Clark International Airport, and Davao International Airport.


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    PH’ Iloilo International Airport resumes operations

    October 16th, 2017

    The Cebu Pacific’s Airbus 320 that overshot the Iloilo International Airport runway. Image ©

    THE Philippines’ Iloilo International Airport has resumed operations Monday afternoon after being closed since late Friday night due to a stuck Cebu Pacific’s plane which overshot the runway allegedly due to increment weather.

    Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) spokesman Eric Apolonio said the agency lifted the closure notice at 2p.m. after it declared that the runway usable and safe for aircraft flight operations.

    He added the stricken Airbus 320, which was stuck in mud and the grassy portion of the Runway 20, was removed shortly before noon and towed to a nearby hangar for further inspection.

    On Sunday, the well-equipped fire and rescue team of the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA), which have lifting bags, flew to Iloilo airport to help in the recovery of the aircraft. However, the team encountered problems as the area is too muddy and the inclement weather in the area made it difficult to remove the damaged plane (CEB 5J641) from the mud.

    The wheels of the aircraft was stuck in at least 20-inch of mud, the CAAP said.

    The IIA, which is one of the airports under CAAP supervision, handles 42 flights a day (20 departures, 20 arrivals and two international flights).

    Meanwhile, CAB Charo Logarta said they have yet to assess the damage saying experts from Airbus will do the assessment. Its priority is to clear runway and open the Iloilo airport.

    At the same time, the CAB has expressed their gratitude to the CAAP, the MIAA, the local government of Iloilo and other partners for their assistance.

    “We also thank our passengers for their patience and understanding, and the public for their support,” the airline said in a statement.

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    Iloilo International Airport to remain closed until Sunday night

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    Iloilo International Airport to remain closed until Sunday night

    October 14th, 2017

    A Cebu Pacific plane reportedly veered from the runway of Iloilo International Airport last Friday. Nobody was hurt. Screen shot from Facebook post of JP Janolino Peñol /

    ILOILO International Airport will remain closed until Sunday evening as investigators are still on site recovering the Cebu Pacific Air aircraft that overshot the runway late Friday night.

    According to the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP), equipment are still being flown in from Manila while investigators, including members of the Aircraft Accident Investigation and Inquiry Board members, and a recovery team are working on the stricken plane.

    No one from the 188 passengers and crew of CEB flight 5J641 on board an Airbus 320 were hurt during the accident, the CAAP, in a statement, said.

    Records showed that while the plane was touching down from Manila, its nose gear landed on a soft spot at the end of Runway 20 causing it to veer off from its intended path.

    Investigators believed that the soft spot was brought about by the heavy rains and strong winds that pummeled the airport shortly before the plane landed after 11 pm.

    Local airport authorities immediately sent a rescue team who brought all on board the plane to safety.

    As a consequence of the accident, all scheduled flights for October 14 and 15 were canceled.

    As the closure of the airport was extended another day from Saturday, the CAAP said the airport will be ready for operation by 7 pm. on Sunday.

    The CEB management, on the other hand, have yet to assess the damage caused by the accident to the aircraft.

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    Suspicious bag disrupts plane’s Davao flight

    October 13th, 2017

    A Cebu Pacific Air plane taking off Photo ©

    A CEBU Pacific flight bound for Davao on Thursday was delayed for over an hour due to the discovery of an unattended bag inside the plane causing inconvenience to its passengers.

    Cebu Pacific’s (CEB) Flight 5J963 was supposed to depart the Ninoy Aquino International Airport at 8:30 a.m. but failed to do so because its passengers were asked to disembark as a precautionary measure while security personnel check the “suspicious backpack” inside the plane.

    A few minutes after the passengers have disembarked, a lady passenger showed up and claimed ownership of the bag. It turned out that she not able to make it to the boarding gate on time.

    According to airport authorities, a ground crew brought the passenger’s bag inside the plane while the passenger was still at the airline counter making some payments. It is not clear if the ground crew informed the cabin crew about the bag they brought in and placed in the plane’s passenger seat.

    Since the plane’s arrival to Davao was delayed, its return flight to Manila was also delayed as a consequence.

    Meanwhile, CEB management apologized to all affected passengers due to the incident.

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    A suspect in the fatal hazing of a law student back in PH

    October 10th, 2017

    Ralph Trangia escorted by immigration officers at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Photo ©

    ONE of the principal suspects in the fatal hazing of University of Santo Tomas College of Law student Horacio Castillo III has returned to the country from the United States “to face the allegations and to prove his innocence.”

    Ralph Trangia, through his lawyer Rowell Ilagan, issued this statement shortly after he and his mother Rosemarie arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport shortly before noon on Monday on board EVA Air flight BR271.

    Ilagan said Trangia’s original intention is to go back to the country when he left for the United States last month.

    “When they purchased the (plane) ticket, they have the return ticket. So, the purchase of the ticket coupled with the actual return today is actually a clear manifestation that they want to voluntary submitted themselves to the jurisdiction of our legal process,” Ilagan told reporters.

    When asked why did Trangia left for the Unites States on early morning of September 19 amid the investigation of the death of Castillo, Ilagan said “those matters will be threshed out during the preliminary investigation. We cannot really say at this moment, so we don’t want to influence directly the decision of the prosecutors.”

    “We just want to thresh out all of our defenses in our counter affidavit during the preliminary investigation,” he added.

    Ilagan was also asked if there are plans for the Horacio family to meet with the Castillos to which he replied: “We have yet to discuss those things and in the meantime, we want the safety and security of our client.”

    Trangia is among the 17 individuals who are facing complaints of murder and violation of the anti-hazing law before the Department of Justice.

    Castillo, a freshman law student, is believed to have been a victim of the brutal initiation rites of Trangia’s Aegis Juris fraternity.

    The Manila Police Department and the Castillo’s parents, Horacio II and Carmina, have filed murder, anti-hazing, robbery, and obstruction of justice raps against Trangia and other members of the fraternity. They also filed a separate obstruction of justice complaint against his mother.

    Meanwhile, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II disclosed receiving information that “US authorities are preparing to deport him (Trangia). So I believe he opted to return voluntarily rather than be deported.”

    Aguirre, however, said the DOJ is willing to offer protection for Trangia “if he asks for it.”

    The DOJ will resume its preliminary investigation on October 24, where the respondents are expected to file their defense through counter-affidavits.


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    Binay flew to Taiwan after being allowed by the anti-graft court

    October 9th, 2017

    Former VP Jejomar Binay Sr. Photo ©

    FORMER Vice President Jejomar Binay left for Taiwan on Monday after being allowed by the Sandiganbayan to travel abroad even as he faces multiple graft charges.

    Armed with a travel authorization from the anti-graft court’s 3rd Division, Binay, together with former Vice President Teofisto Guingona, former Foreign Affairs Secretary Perfecto Yasay, and former Economic and Cultural Office (MECO) board member Jose Tanso left for Taipeh for a Wednesday speaking engagement.

    Tanso said they were invited by the Prospect Foundation of Taiwan to be the keynote speakers as Taiwan celebrates its national day on October 10 to October 12.

    Binay will be the morning speaker on October 11 while Guingona will deliver his speech in the evening of the same date.

    Yasay, meanwhile, will deliver an inspirational talk the following day, Tanso said. He added that the trip will help improve the relations of the Philippines with its neighboring countries like Taiwan.

    After his Taipeh visit, Binay will proceed to the former British crown colony of Hong Kong for a brief vacation. He will return to the country on October 17.

    Binay is facing four graft cases, one count of malversation of public funds and nine counts of falsification for the alleged anomalous construction of Makati City Hall parking building.

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    Girlfriend of Las Vegas shooter was in the PH at the time of shooting

    October 4th, 2017

    PHILIPPINE immigration authorities on Wednesday have confirmed that Marilou Danley, the girlfriend of Las Vegas gunman Stephen Paddock, was in the country and left for the United States on Tuesday.

    Bureau of Immigration Port Operations Division chief Red Marinas said the 62-year old Danley boarded the 9 pm. Philippine Airlines flight PR102 bound for Los Angeles. He also said that based on the BI records, Danley arrived in the country from Japan on September 15. She then flew to Hong Kong a week later and returned on Sept. 25.

    Marinas said the bureau’s role in this instance is “to help the US government to monitor the movement (of Danley) at the airport, and to give them information about a person who arrived from their homeland and left for United States.”

    He also said that the BI has already informed the US Homeland Security about the Australian citizenship of Danley.

    “I think the US Homeland Security is already waiting for her at the Los Angeles Airport,” the BI official said.

    Earlier, BI officials refused to confirm nor deny that Danley is in the Philippines saying that they are not inclined to release any information about her or answer queries if she is in the country because she was cleared by American authorities in connection with the Las Vegas shooting and is not an international fugitive.

    According to US news reports, Danley was in the Philippines at the time of the shooting. The news also reported that Paddock had sent $100,000 to the Philippines the week before the shooting.


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    Vegas shooter wired $100K to girlfriend before rampage

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    Bureau of Customs-NAIA to exceed collection target – Commissioner Isidro Lapeña

    September 28th, 2017

    Image ©

    WITH the operation of the new x-ray machines at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, Bureau of Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña expects to more than meet this year’s target revenue of PhP50.1 billion for the country’s premier gateway.

    Lapeña said with the new x-ray machines, taxable items can be easily detected as well as drugs and guns hidden on luggage and balikbayan boxes without opening them.

    The former Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency director general, who inaugurated the new x-ray machines to signal the start of its operations, said a total of 19 units, costing PhP172 million will be assigned the NAIA terminals.

    “These are advance units. We will be able to improve the facilitation of luggage and at the same time, every box or bag would be subjected to thorough inspections.”

    District III Collector Ed Macabeo said that two units and one unit of brand new Rapiscan x-ray machines are now installed at NAIA Terminal 1 and 3 respectively.

    Sixteen x-rays machines will be installed at the three terminals of NAIA while two mobile x-ray machines will be utilized to check personal belongings and luggage of VIPs and celebrities, especially those with chartered flights and whose aircraft are parked at the remote parking of NAIA terminals.

    Macabeo pointed out that their collection target during the lean month was a whopping P3 billion per month, 11 percent deficit on monthly target collection of P4.2 billion.

    Nevertheless, there was time that they hit the target collection during the month of February, March and May, he added.

    “We made it, and even exceeded from the target despite that the port is not so big like the other port such as the Manila International Container Port and the Port of Manila,” Macabeo insists.

    Six months ago, NAIA came up with a policy not to open or subject to inspection the check-in luggage of passengers unless it was marked “X” indicating it may contain taxable items.

    The bureau has designated two lanes – red and green – for passengers and crew of arriving international flights to choose where to exit.

    The green lane is designated for passengers and crew who have nothing to declare or have no goods for purposes of import duties and taxes, with goods that can be admitted free of import duties and taxes or do not carry any goods which are subject to import prohibition, restriction and regulation.

    The red lane, on the other hand, is intended for passengers of international airlines with goods to declare for purposes of import duties or taxes, those with goods above the exempted Customs limits, or carrying goods or articles prohibited, controlled or regulated by several statues.

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    Unpleasant things await erring PH Bureau of Customs personnel

    September 25th, 2017

    Newly appointed Bureau of Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña Photo ©

    NEWLY appointed Bureau of Customs Commissioner Isidro S. Lapeña on Monday warns that something unpleasant will happen to personnel who do not make the proper valuation of goods.

    “I know arithmetic, as I know the correct valuation of goods. If any of you who does not want to follow the proper valuation you are giving me the reason to do that you don’t want to happen to you,” Lapeña, without elaborating, said.

    Lapeña issued the notice during the 57th Founding Anniversary of the BoC at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), where he disclosed that his marching order from Malacañang is to stop corruption in the bureau as well as to improve its revenue earnings.

    The former Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency director general also took the opportunity to remind the BoC rank and file that the “tara” bribery system is illegal.

    At the same time, Lapeña honored the BoC’s NAIA District Collector III Ed Macabeo, who is retiring this month, by awarding him a Plaque of Appreciation for the good work he has done for the bureau.

    Meanwhile, Lapeña announced that there are 587 BoC positions awaiting qualified personnel and those who have been with the BoC for over a decade.

    It will be recalled that former BoC Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon blocked the promotions in the bureau and appealed to (government) officials to stop meddling in the bureau’s appointments, citing it as a form of corruption. Without naming them, he said some government officials want to influence the promotion board of the BoC.

    He also said the bureau will start hiring workers to man at the country’s premier airport.

    The promotion and hiring programs that Lapeña had planned aims to strengthen the bureau’s ranks and increase their revenue while combating corruption. It is also meant to improve the services of the BoC and its embattled image among Filipinos and foreigners alike.


    PH airport authorities preparing to receive hurricane Irma evacuees

    September 20th, 2017

    Hurricane Irma as it pummels Puerto Rico Photo ©

    THE Manila International Airport Authority is preparing to receive Filipinos fleeing from the devastation brought about by hurricane Irma in the American territory of Puerto Rico.

    The MIAA said at least 132 Filipinos are expected to arrive Wednesday night on board a Department of Foreign Affairs chartered Philippine Airlines flight. Among the expected evacuees are three expecting mothers, two elderly, an infant and a wheelchair bound passenger.

    The evacuees, the MIAA said, availed of the repatriation program offered by the Philippine government. The evacuees are said to have lost their properties because of hurricane Irma.

    Hurricane Irma was described as “extremely dangerous” when it landfall in the island of Barbuda on September 6, and barreled its way across the Caribbean.

    Reports said there were about more than 150,000 Filipinos that were badly affected by hurricane Irma.


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