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Renaming of airport an insult to Kapampangans

CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga — Members of the Clark Development Corporation (CIAC) board should apologize to Kapampangans for renaming the Diosdado Macapagal International Airport (DMIA), a former Clark official said.
Alex Cauguiran, former CIAC vice president for operations, lambasted the board, including CIAC president Victor Luciano and Clark Development Corporation (CDC) president Felipe Antonio Remollo, for approving a resolution renaming DMIA to Clark International Airport (CIA).
The CIAC board during its 10th special meeting on October 14, 2011 approved the resolution restoring the name of CIA.
The resolution states that it will restore the name “Clark International Airport” to refer to the Clark Civil Aviation Complex within the Clark Freeport Zone to enhance its international acceptance and to preserve its historical significance.
CIAC clarified, however, that it did not drop Macapagal’s name in the airport, noting that the Terminal 1 will be named as Diosdado Macapagal Terminal (DMT) to recognize the legacy of former President Diosdado P. Macapagal as the first Kapampangan to become the President of the Republic of the Philippines.
Clark International Airport was renamed to DMIA in July 2001 through a board resolution in honor of the late President Macapagal.
Cauguiran said the CIAC board resolution is deceptive and defective.
“[All members] of the CIAC board are all accountable for their action, I think for not making a thorough research before they approved the resolution [renaming the airport],” Cauguiran said.
He said legalities and guidelines were not studied well, and how the Kapampangans would react to the collective action was also not considered.
“Status quo (DMIA) should be maintained for now. CIAC should make public apology to the Kapampangans,” he added.
Cauguiran also stressed a guideline of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines that prohibits the renaming of the airport if it is already named after a former President.
“The tourists and investors will not come here because we have a good name. In the first place, who is Harold Clark as compared to former President Diosdado Macapagal? They will come here because the labor is cheap, the place is secured, and people are kind,” Cauguiran told Luciano.
Some members of the Pampanga Mayors’ League (PML) also said the initiative to rename the airport is an insult to the intellect and dignity of the Kapampangans.
“Isang kabastusan at pagyurak sa dignidad ng mga Kapampangan ang alisin ang pangalan ng dating Pangulong Diosdado sa ating airport kapalit ng pangalan ng isang dayuhan (It’s an insult to the dignity of Kapampangans to remove the name of former President Diosdado Macapagal in exchange for a name of a foreigner),” PML president Jerry Pelayo said.
Pelayo also questioned the loyalty of Luciano to the Kapampangans, after the latter openly admitted that he favors the renaming of the airport.
Cauguiran, now the chief of staff of Angeles City Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan, also criticized a story of Sun.Star Pampanga, saying it did not reflect what really transpired during the dialogue on the airport renaming where Pampanga mayors echoed their strong objection against the CIAC resolution.
“It (story) focused on Ping Remollo’s role. Luciano, I think, is even portrayed here na parang hindi accountable sa ginawa nila. Him, being president of CIAC should know better,” Cauguiran said.
Luciano is the one peddling CIAC justifications on DMIA renaming in his press releases, said Cauguiran.
“Luciano even admitted that their board action overlooked the points raised by the mayors. In other words, admitting CIAC board’s mistakes. Luciano, Remollo, et al should all be made accountable,” Cauguiran said.
Luciano met with the local officials led by Pampanga Mayors’ League President Jerry Pelayo last Friday here.
The mayors informed Luciano that majority of their constituents are opposed to the renaming of DMIA.
Luciano also vowed to relay to the CIAC board the sentiments of the Pampanga mayors who are objecting the renaming of the airport.
Various groups in Pampanga reportedly threatened to stage mass actions if CIAC would implement the resolution.
Angeles City Councilor Willie Rivera, meanwhile, said he will file a resolution in the City Council declaring Clark officials persona non grata if they implement the renaming of the airport to CIA.
Meanwhile, Bacolor Mayor Jomar Hizon told Luciano to reconsider their decision as it could set a precedent in the future.
“Baka magpapalit-palit ang pangalan ng airport tuwing nagbabago ang administrasyon (Renaming of airport might happen as administration changes),” Hizon said. (Sun.Star Pampanga/Sunnex)
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on March 05, 2012.


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Tuesday, March 6, 2012 About Clark, Freeport Zone




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