Thus, said Alexander S. Cauguiran in his fi rst fl ag-raising ceremony here on Monday as offi cer-in-charge of the Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC), the government body that manages and operates this airport.
Last Friday, the CIAC board appointed Cauguiran as OIC pending the fi nal issuance of the document that will con- fi rm his permanent appointment as president and CEO which will be released anytime this week.
Cauguiran is not new to CIAC being its former executive vice president during the Arroyo administration.
On Monday, Cauguiran issued new guidelines and policies for the more than 200 offi cers and employees of the corporation stressing the need to pursue the marching orders of President Rodrigo Duterte made during his SONA on July 25.
Cauguiran said among the priorities is the establishment of a one-stop shop for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) here and to prepare this airport as a premier gateway but one under the dual airport policy.
He enjoined everybody to prepare for the immediate transfer of excess fl ights from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Manila to this airport while preparations are made for a “new, bigger and better passenger terminal building.”
Cauguiran said in order to be ready for flight diversions, he will immediately meet with owners and operators of major bus companies in the province. “We will talk to them and enter into a memorandum of understanding so that if there will be diversion of fl ights and they want to go out we will have buses ready for them and that must happen this week,” he assured.
“I’m here for no other reason except for what I have been saying for several years and decades now to help develop Clark International Airport, to become if not the premier gateway, at least one under the dual airport policy and it is now happening. It is a challenge to me, therefore it is a challenge to all of us,” he said.
“We cannot solely rely on market forces alone as what we have experienced that’s why we need government intervention and this is what we, advocates, have been saying all along ever since. Government intervention, a national policy and only President Duterte has done this that is why we need to prepare,” he said.
Cauguiran explained why putting up a new terminal is a priority. “On the average of four to eight aircraft per hour, narrow-bodied, the load factor is 150 to 170 persons and multiply that by eight planes per hour times 12 hours or 14 hours per day times 365 days a year that is equivalent to almost seven million on top of the almost one million now,” he said.
“We cannot accommodate them in the existing terminal,” he pointed out. “What if the next two or three years the growth rate is 10 percent at eight million plus 800,000 every year compounded that’s a lot. Before President Duterte steps down from offi ce, we will see all these things materialize and then we will see the full development of the Clark International Airport and we must prepare ourselves. We must,” he stressed.
Cauguiran said the connectivity of NAIA and this airport with a speed rail will also be prioritized as announced by the President during his SONA.
To further tighten security measures at this airport, Cauguiran announced the revocation of all previously issued airport passes within a week and that new policies on access passes, including parking policy as well as on transport groups will be reviewed in the light of the recent security breach at this airport.
“Never again a security breach will happen under my watch,” Cauguiran said warning that if the unauthorized and undocumented person involved in the incident reached Singapore, “we will be the laughingstock of the world.”
“And here we are asking the national leadership to transfer fl ights to develop Clark airport but in the basic job of securing our facility we failed. That is unacceptable. My instinct tells me to terminate all involved but my heart is pleading me not to do it, so I will allow my mind to take the natural course and give due process that is why I am asking the ad hoc committee to conduct and fi nish the investigation ASAP,” Cauguiran said.
As a policy, Cauguiran said all vehicles issued to all employees will only be used from Mondays to Fridays and shall be returned to the motor pool at the end of the work week except when there is offi cial business but a formal request must be made fi rst and signed only by him for approval.
Cauguiran also said all vice presidents, assistant vice presidents down to the managers should now vacate their living quarters or villas which are all revoked. “I will give you one week to vacate all of them,” he ordered.
He explained that this will “give accommodation to national agencies helping CIAC like the CIQ (customs, immigration, quarantine), OTS, CAAP and if possible we will help accommodate airline crews and pilots as requested by carriers.”
To set an example, Cauguiran said his villa at the Bicentennial Park will be transformed into a regular executive villa that can be used by CIAC offi cers and employees. “If you have a task to do, you can use my villa overnight. If you want even on weekends you meet there, you talk there, so that you can have a pleasant bonding while working,” he said.
“I will also allow you to use all the villas – mine and the other ones,” he added.
Cauguiran also enjoined all vice presidents, assistant vice president down to the managers to come on time with the rank-and-fi le employees. “Kung ano ang pasok ng rank-and-fi le yun din ang pasok ninyo,” he said as he ordered everybody not to be absent during the regular fl ag-raising ceremony.
“I do not believe that some of our employees are involved in petty corruption. I refuse to believe that you ask for gasoline. I refuse to believe that there is favoritism in parking, taxis, transport. I refuse to believe that there is favoritism in the issuing of IDs, etc. To me that is just perception but my golly, under my watch I don’t want even perception to happen! Do away with that,” he declared.
“It is my dream that from now on and it must happen that CIAC employees and offi cers alike will be known as professionals,” he said.
Ending: “Let us refocus our energy. Let us reinvent ourselves. Let’s focus on the corporation.”
Cauguiran replaced Atty. Emigdio “Dino” Tanjuatco III who resigned.