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Aquino orders airport contingency measures

The country’s top transport officials will get to keep their jobs for now despite the chaos caused by the massive airport blackout last weekend.

President Aquino has rejected calls for their ouster and instead has ordered the Department of Transportation and Communications and the Manila International Airport Authority to take “contingency measures” to avoid a repeat of the disruptive blackout at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3.

The President wanted authorities to ensure the airport’s stable power supply as well as passenger safety following a closed-door meeting with Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph Emilio T. Abaya, MIAA General Manager Jose Angel Honrado, and other transport officials in Malacañang.

“President Aquino has directed Secretary Abaya and Airport General Honrado to adopt contingency measures to prevent the recurrence of the power outage that disrupted operations at NAIA Terminal 3 over the weekend,” Presidential Communications Operations Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said.

“Airport authorities were also instructed to maintain vigilance so that the safety of travelers will be assured continuously,” Coloma added.

Some groups have called five-hour power outage at the NAIA Terminal 3 as a national disgrace, saying it highlighted the incompetence of the airport authority and the DoTC.

They claimed that the blackout was proof that Abaya and Honrado have been sleeping on their jobs and should be fired immediately.

The power outage was supposedly caused by a breakdown of a power substation near the airport. The unprecedented airport blackout resulted to numerous flight delays and stranded thousands of passengers.