After a series of reported luggage thefts, the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) will not renew its contract with ground handler Miascor that will expire on March 31.
MIAA General Manager Eddie Monreal sent a letter to Miascor president Fidel Reyes on January 19, 2017, asking his company to vacate the premises it occupies at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) and other airports in 60 days.
The non-renewal stemmed from the luggage theft that involved six employees of Miascor at the Clark International Airport. The victim was an overseas Filipino worker whose video of his looted baggage went viral on Facebook.
President Rodrigo Duterte earlier warned on that he would fire airport officials if similar cases of theft happen again. Duterte has personally apologized to Jovenil dela Cruz, the victim of the luggage theft. He was compensated with P82,824 by Miascor for the lost items.
“There was a meeting yesterday in Malacañang. We were called by the Office of the President…. The President wants to put a stop to this. Kailangang huminto ang ganitong nga pangyayari (These incidents need to stop),” Monreal said in a live press conference on Friday, January 18.
The contact between Miascor and MIAA was signed on July 8, 2014 for Miascor to handle the baggages of the airline passengers. Miascor has fired employees involved and filed cases against them.
Meanwhile, Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade has ordered that all baggage handlers must wear body cameras in relation to President’s stern warning. Airport officials were asked to produce an initial 100 cameras, while security firms were directed by the transportation chief to buy their own, said the MIAA chief.
“Let this be a warning to all players at the airport that one more mistake will put their jobs and businesses at stake,” Monreal added.