Philippine gov't to meet Airline, pilots for securing flights

16:36, August 01, 2010      

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Philippine government officials led by Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. will meet with the management of Philippine Airlines (PAL) and officials of the Airline Pilots Association of the Philippines (Alpap) on Monday to address the problem of the national carrier, which had to cancel a number of international flights for lack of pilots.

President Benigno Aquino III said in a mini-press conference at the La Salle Greenhills gymnasium that Ochoa will be joined by Transportation Secretary Jose de Jesus, Labor Secretary Rosalinda Balcoz, and possibly Justice Secretary Leila de Lima.

"I understand it will be two separate meetings. The end point being to address the situation and to remind everybody, PAL for instance, that they do have obligations when they secured the franchise to operate this public conveyance. The pilots also have an obligation," Aquino said.

The pertinent laws would be studied to determine if such had been violated by the pilots who had quit PAL to work in foreign airlines without observing the mandated six-months waiting period so that their replacements could be trained, he said, adding the action of the pilots has disrupted tourism and the economy in general.

"There has been disruption to our tourism efforts and to other aspects of the economy that would need their services. If this is not warranted, they lay themselves open with appropriate charges. Hopefully, we will be able to come up with a resolution so that the riding public is not inconvenienced and the economy does not suffer in what is an inter-company dispute," Aquino said.

PAL was forced to cancel some local and international flights over the weekend because it lacked pilots.

Source: Xinhua


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