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Ouster of CAAP exec sought over runway mishap

DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Mayor Sara Duterte is seeking the dismissal of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) chief for southern Mindanao for the alleged mishandling of the Cebu Pacific jet mishap last week that led to the closure of the Davao International Airport for two days.

The Cebu Pacific Airbus 320 jet overshot the runway while landing in a thunderstorm, then skidded off and got stuck in a grassy portion last June 9 that shut down operations of the airport. No one was hurt in the incident.

In a letter to Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya, Duterte asked for the relief of CAAP southern Mindanao chief Frederick San Felix for showing sheer incompetence in handling the runway accident.

She is also set to file a complaint against San Felix and other concerned personnel at CAAP Davao.

Duterte lamented the lack of proper response to the emergency situation by local CAAP officials, much to the detriment of the 165 passengers of Cebu Pacific Flight 5J971.

She pointed out that the slow effort to remove the aircraft from the crash site and reopen the runway caused the delay in the resumption of operations of the airport.

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The mayor estimated more than P250 million in losses incurred from the airport’s extended closure.

Meanwhile, in a special board meeting Saturday bight, the Davao City Chamber of Commerce also passed a resolution unanimously supporting the move to urge the relief of San Felix.

Mindanao Business Council chair Vicente Lao expressed support for Duterte’s demand to dismiss San Felix.


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