CLARK International Airport was again much in the news last week. Just before that pilfering by Miascor employees of a passenger from Bulacan happened, Airport President Alex Caugiran was riding high because of an impressive and better performance in 2017. And then the pilferage. Nobody can put one over Alex. I know him so well. He immediately filed a criminal complaint and banned for life from the airport premises the suspects. He is no nonsense manager. Very passionate on what he does.
Last December 2017, the bidding for the terminal expansion was held and was awarded already to Megawide at the tune of more than P9 billion. This year more passengers will be using the airport. I don’t think that very isolated incident which was promptly addressed anyway will further boost a better image for the airport. It was one unfortunate incident.
The Duterte government is making a lot of headway as far as its campaign against the illegal drug trade which became gargantuan because past administrations clearly overlooked it. Corruption, political dynasties, environmental issues, oligarchy, traffic, unemployment and poverty have been moving in circles in this country since I started reading the newspapers in my teen years.
And based on the latest surveys giving President Duterte 83 percent approval rating, it means that Filipinos believe and trust that he can fulfill what he is promising. Meaning, his "Build, Build, Build" program will see the realization of Clark Airport accommodating 10 million passengers and a fast train that can ease travel. Duterte and Caugiran share the same brand of leadership. With rolled sleeves they want things done. But of course not in a snap of a finger. The motto should be, "when you do things, you do it right." To recall, that Chinese construction company Sinomach failed the Macapagal Arroyo administration and didn’t finish the railway contract. And reportedly was able to collect more than what was constructed.
Meanwhile, President Duterte is bounded by six years, and more than a year already lapsed but may stay longer once there will be a charter change with a ten year transition period. The accumulation of problems which beset us hopefully may be solved in a short time frame. What is important for us is for the Duterte administration to finish all the infrastructure which are already on the drawing board.
Dreaming is strictly none revenue, so they say. President Duterte is dream big for our country. Aside from being hell bent in finishing the drug problem which reached pandemic proportions over the years. He will end corruption. He will end insurgency. He will solve the traffic mess. Trying to erase poverty. He may not complete building the square to capture the circle. But that's okay. At the end of the day, Duterte will become the template of future presidents.
* It seems everybody is protesting. The teachers, jeepney drivers and consumers resulting from that onrushing TRAIN law.
* The shelves of grocery stores were emptied at the end of 2017 not because there were too many shoppers. There were hoarders, and government didn’t do nothing. Lip service, yes.
* The excise tax on coal and fuel is already taking its toll. Increased pump prices. The businessmen are in business for profit. Energy Secretary Al Cusi’s warning to petroleum dealers unheeded. Give your best shot Al. Ha ha ha!