Most Dangerous Airports in World | NAIA Philippines
The Philippines just barely bailed out from the top list of the Worst Airports in the World. Yet, we are again taking another path into joining the ranks of the world’s most dangerous airports.
The recent exposé of “laglag-bala” where bullets are cunningly planted into the passenger’s bag is terrifying travelers passing through NAIA in Manila. Bag owners are reportedly extorted with huge amount of money in exchange for dropping the criminal charges & detention.
Are we in the league of the World’s Most Dangerous Airports?
It victimizes overseas Filipino workers, foreigners, students, senior citizens & even those on wheelchair. As it also happened in Davao City Airport, the scale it has reached is wide, leaving no one safe in this shameless act.
According to reports, it is highly organized involving spotters, security screeners & officers. It also allegedly includes some accomplices like taxi drivers & porters. Fueled by social media, this silent scam finally came to surface & slapping us once again with another issue of corruption & danger.
We have low-grade CCTV cameras. A helpdesk that is futile. Unimaginable queues. Consistently delayed flights. Exorbitantly priced taxis. No convenient public transport connections to anywhere in Manila. And now, a “laglag-bala” scam. We are doomed!
What effects will this bring to our tourism image & competitiveness?
No matter how we promote that it’s more fun in the Philippines if at the forefront of our tourist touchpoints swindling like this happen, our tourism campaigns are all bound to fail.
We have long been languishing in the state of massive corruption. Although the world knows well about it, are we just going to accept “laglag-bala” as another source of distrust? Not only it is corruption but an imminent danger because it harasses passengers for a serious crime worthy of jail time.
In the entire Asia-Pacific region, Philippines rocks in the bottom category of tourist arrivals. But happily, with the immense effort of our tourism agencies, we are consistently posting positive growths in the last 2 quarters of 2015. Are we just going to put all of this to waste?
Corruption in our country is not only a perceived factor but also a reality happening on ground. It seriously hurts the inflow of tourism, damages our cultural image & crushes morale.
With the upcoming APEC Summit where the Philippines is hosting, I wonder if they can do this to foreign dignitaries. Or are they just shaking off ordinary passengers?
Where do we go from here?
In a few months, “laglag-bala” threats will be joined by election-related crimes. Where will corruption & political instability lead us?
In a labor-intensive industry, tourism creates jobs & revenues. It brings in both national & international investments. But it is also highly dependent on our political strength.
“It’s isolated”, says Malacanang. Facepalm! It’s not a question of how many are affected but why is this happening? They tell the public that they’re investigating the issue. Faint! There’s really no political will to carryout a transparent scrutiny because the perpetrators could be their friends & relatives.
Where do we go from here? Is it into oblivion?
Holding on to tourism dollars.
The global trend of travel is directed towards Third World countries. This is propelled by attractive destinations & cheaper packages.
But it discourages tourists, whether domestic or international, to travel in the Philippines when they know that they have to pay extra for bribes. Let alone the potential harassment waiting at the airport.
Take note that the airport in Manila accounts for 61% of tourist entry into the country. If they have planted bullets in at least 100 passengers a day for the last 20 years, your math skills will give up on you.
Is it Adieu to More Fun in the Philippines?
We tell the world to come & bask on our white sand beaches, trek our lush forests & sample our explosive cuisine. We encourage our fellow Filipinos to explore first our country before we appreciate others. We invite our relatives who live abroad to come home. Yet we cannot assure them of their security.
Our overseas Filipino workers are hailed as heroes but are haplessly preyed upon by these vultures in the airport. How can these people stomach to feed their families with food from blood money?
To the implementing agencies—the OTS, Philippine National Police-Aviation Security Group, MIAA & CAAP, get your acts together because we will be slapped with international advisories on security again.
To Malacanang, you have the power to resolve this issue. We voted for you. We are your Boss. We are tired of being belittled because we live in a corrupt country.
To those planning to come to the Philippines, please seal your bags well. Always remember that Opportunity + Desire = Crime.