Clark body seeks oversight functions, security control in airport operation | Inquirer News

Clark body seeks oversight functions, security control in airport operation

/ 04:18 AM August 04, 2020

NEW TERMINAL The Bases Conversion and Development Authority built a P15-billion passenger terminal at Clark International Airport in Clark Freeport hoping to serve up to 12 million travelers using this alternative gateway in Pampanga province yearly. TONETTE OREJAS

CLARK FREEPORT, Philippines — State-run Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) has asked Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade to give it oversight functions over Clark International Airport (CRK).

Aaron Aquino, CIAC president and CEO, made the request after claiming that the consortium Luzon International Premier Airport Development Corp. (Lipad) “had not been recognizing the authority of CIAC over the Clark Civil Aviation Complex (CCAC) as mandated by [Executive Order No.] 716.”


According to Aquino, EO 716 issued by former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo mandated CIAC to operate and manage the 2,367-hectare airport complex.


A retired police general, Aquino was hardly two months on the job when he found weaknesses in the organization that President Duterte put him in after his stint in the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency.

In EO 14, which Mr. Duterte issued in 2017, he tasked the Department of Transportation (DOTr) with maintaining policy supervision and operational control over CRK.


The President also restructured CIAC from being an attached agency of the DOTr to a subsidiary of the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA).

It was the fourth time that CIAC was made into a BCDA subsidiary since its creation in 1994.

In a letter received by Tugade on June 16, Aquino requested to make CIAC the “implementing arm of DOTr in the implementation of its oversight functions over the CRK operations.”Aquino also told Tugade that CIAC had been excluded from the operation of CRK, which had been privatized to Lipad, and its new P15-billion passenger terminal.

Lipad consists of Filinvest Development Corp., JG Summit Holdings Inc., Philippine Airport Ground Support Solutions Inc. and Changi Airports Philippines Pte. Ltd.


CIAC is also not getting any share of income that Lipad generated from a 25-year contract to operate and maintain CRK and to manage 810 ha of the aviation complex from January 2019, Aquino said in his letters to Tugade.

Aquino would not give more details. Tugade and Vivencio Dizon, BCDA president and CEO, had yet to respond.

‘Two fathers’

Inquirer sources said CIAC was “like a son with two fathers” who excluded him from running his own household even before Aquino accepted the post.According to Bi Yong Chungunco, Lipad CEO, it was the DOTr that granted the consortium the franchise to operate and maintain CRK.

“As such, Lipad remains under the regulatory supervision of [the] DOTr,” she told Aquino in a June 13 letter.

Aside from requesting oversight functions over airport operations, Aquino sought security control over the aviation complex, including issuing access passes again.

“The CIAC, under its mandate, can be assured that the performance of Lipad meets the required performance standards of airport operations under existing laws, rules and issuances and in furtherance of the full development of the CCAC, in accordance with its approved master plan,” Aquino said.Last month, Aquino wrote Dizon to ask that CIAC be given a 10-percent share from gross revenue received from the operation of CRK to “ensure the viability of CIAC.”

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CIAC said it spent and lost money when CRK passed onto private hands, based on a report that outlined the talking points in a meeting set by Tugade this month. The BCDA spent P9.36 billion for the construction of the new terminal, it was learned.


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