Zambo, Cotabato execs worry about PAL flight reductionPhilippine Daily Inquirer
COTABATO CITY—The Philippine Airlines has decided to shut down its service to a number of Mindanao airports, including this city, Mayor Japal Guiani Jr. said Sunday.
Guiani told the Inquirer that based on a communiqué furnished him, PAL would only be retaining its service to such airports as Francisco Bangoy International Airport in Davao City and General Santos International Airport.
In Zamboanga City, Celso Bayabos, Air Transport Office manager, said PAL also informed local officials of its planned stoppage of the Manila-Zamboanga flights.
Bayabos said PAL had signified the intention last month but local officials had opposed it even though other airlines service the same route.
Guiani said even though other airlines service the Manila-Cotabato route, PAL’s decision to pull out “would surely affect us, especially our business community.”
He said the city government had asked PAL to reconsider the decision but there had been no reply yet.
In the PAL communiqué, Guiani said the airline company cited the closure of its Manila-Cotabato flight at the “soonest possible time” as part of a “strategy-shift.”
“We are worried about [the decision’s] negative impact on the local economy,” he said.
Guiani said PAL’s decision to skip this city in its service could “send a bad message to businessmen, both local and international, that Cotabato City is not a good place to invest in.”
“That’s why we are appealing to be spared from the planned closure,” Guiani said. Charlie Señase with a report from Julie Alipala, Inquirer Mindanao