Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade ordered the 24/7 construction of Sangley Airport in Cavite to meet the operational timeline set by President Rodrigo Duterte.
Tugade ordered the hiring of additional manpower, the implementation of extended working hours and the infusion of additional equipment starting June 13 to ease congestion in main airport Ninoy Aquino International Airport.
“Whatever it takes, we need to make sure that the directive of the President is delivered. Hire more manpower to work 24/7,” he said.
President Duterte on Tuesday ordered the transfer of domestic flights from Naia to Sangley Air Base to ease airport congestion.
“The President directed the operations in Sangley Point to start immediately,” Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo said. The President wanted the Sangley Airbase to accommodate domestic flights by November.
He said this was a month earlier than Tugade’s target to transfer the domestic flights from Naia to Sangley Airbase by December.
Duterte ordered the transfer of domestic flights to Sangley Air Base after making a surprise inspection at the NAIA Terminal 2 early Monday morning where he was dismayed over flight cancellations and delays.
He asked Tugade’s agency to solve the problem in the long term and promised passengers for the government to come up with a remedy within a month.
Department of Transportation Assistant Secretary for Procurement and Project Implementation Giovanni Lopez met with members of Task Force Sangley on June 12 in compliance with Tugade’s directive for the accelerated construction of the Sangley Airport,
In attendance were representatives from the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP), the Philippine Air Force, the ferry system, and the project contractor.
Lopez reported that critical developments in the project were well under way. These include the runway, apron, Passenger Terminal Building, its power supply, drainage system and site development.
Lopez further relayed Tugade’s instructions to CAAP to work closely with the DOTr on the civil works so that the support facilities can be immediately incorporated for the airport to commence operations at the soonest time possible.
Panelo, meanwhile, said Tugade had already initiated the testing of ferries that can operate from Mall of Asia in Pasay City to Sangley within 18 to 24 minutes.
He said President Duterte wanted airport security to be handled by a single entity, either from the military or civilian force to ensure passengers safety.
Tugade would an executive order for the President痴 consideration, Panelo said.
Sangley Airbase or the Danilo Atienza Air Base used to be a US naval station base until it was turned over to the Philippine Navy and Air Force in 1971.
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