Ninoy Aquino International Airport or NAIA, Manila and the Philippines’ premier gateway is in the spotlight once again. Sadly, it is not that type of spotlight that would showcase this oft-derided airport in the positive light.
This comes with after repeated incidents of passengers being caught by airport security ostensibly because they were carrying some bullets in their luggage upon inspection, a charge being denied by the passengers involved and are in turn crying foul over them being framed for the crime.
These incidents have become known as “laglag bala” or dropped bullet incidents, a new low for the airport whose reputation has been in the low for quite a while now.
Those who are “accused” of bringing in those bullets come from different backgrounds. There was an overseas Filipino worker, an old lady going abroad to see her grandson, a foreigner who came to the country for a vacation and is boarding a flight out of a country, a member of a contingent that would represent the country in some event. It seems age or status does not play a huge factor here.
And as for them whether they are guilty or not, well honestly this should be a no-brainer. I mean, hell…if I were intent on smuggling bullets, why should I smuggle just one or a few pieces outside the country? Guns and other ammunition require a great number of bullets and one or a few will not do. Smuggling bullets require a greater number, at least as much as those that can fit a crate. And bonafide smugglers know that very well.
Besides, if you’re a bonafide smuggler, you know very well that such items are too sensitive and risky to be transported via a passenger carrying such an item in the airport. These require to be brought in through back channels and sophisticated routes that would be least detected by security.
In any case, these incidents have sparked some level of fear, perhaps paranoia among people who are wary they may be next. Now some passengers go through the trouble of putting additional wrapping on their luggage on all corners so no bullets will be put in their luggage, avoiding going through the hassle and trauma being caught.
The Urban Roamer believes that rise of these incidences can be attributed to a syndicate operating to victimize these poor souls. As to their motive for doing this, I have no idea. Nevertheless, these incidents are no longer a laughing matter and must be put to an end.
And for the life of me, I cannot understand why our government officials do not share the same sense of urgency to act on these alarming incidents, saying these are just “isolated incidents.” Isolated incidents my foot. Why don’t these people just do their jobs and stop saying these stupid statements or maybe blame someone else for their incompetence in handling this matter.
Sadly, this incident is yet just another low to the low NAIA has been getting for the past 5 years or so, ever since Angel Honrado took over as general manager of the airport. There was the report of NAIA being the worst airport, crimes and incidents happening in the airport itself because there were no CCTV cameras installed at the airport. Imagine that, our country’s premier gateway has no facilities, a basic and a mandatory one at that, that would help improve security in the airport.
Try also checking out the website of NAIA and you’ll see its URL is not even a proper one. What the hell.
And all this time, despite all this evidence of incompetency, Honrado has still managed to remain at his post. I guess we can thank that to his association to Pres. Noynoy Aquino all these years, including being part of his security detail stretching back to the time Noynoy’s mother was president. Yeah, nuff said about that.
And with this latest black eye on an airport named after the president’s own father, we should be fed up with the incompetence and ineptitude of Honrado. That goes as well to my “favorite” cabinet secretary Jun (P)Abaya of the Department of Transportation who oversees the management of the airport.
And on that note, I join the many fed up Filipinos in calling out these two doofuses as we say:
RESIGN NOW, (P)ABAYA AND ANGEL (KUNO) HONRADO