Travel firm wants tourism law IRR declared unconstitutional
- Ghio Ong, Helen Flores () - March 16, 2010 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - A travel firm has asked the Manila regional trial court (RTC) to declare as unconstitutional the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of Republic Act 9593, the Tourism Act of 2009.

In a 42-page petition filed last Feb. 9, the Rajah Travel Corp. said the IRR, signed by Tourism Secretary Joseph Ace Durano on Nov. 10, 2009, should be declared “unconstitutional, null and void” because it excluded accredited enterprises from the Tourism Congress, and had non-accredited enterprises represented at the event.

The petition named Durano and the officers of the Tourism Congress namely Charlie Uy, Mike Albana, Alma Jimenez, Jenny Franco, Susan Pala, Gene Bangayan, Wanda Teo, Dexter Deyto and Jaime Cura as respondents.

The petitioner asked the court to declare the Tourism Congress held last Nov. 25 and all actions held therein as null and void.

The petitioner also asked the court to compel Durano to draft the IRR for RA 9593 “that properly respects and safeguards the rights of the petitioner.”

The travel firm said the IRR was never deposited in the University of the Philippines Law Center, as required by the Administrative Code.

“This mandatory requirement being absent, the questioned IRR is null and void and never took any efficacy,” the petitioner said.

Federation of Tourism Industries in the Philippines president Alejandra Clemente said she wrote to Durano last Nov. 19, objecting to the violations of the law committed by the execution of the IRR, particularly the denial of all accredited enterprises’ right to be presented at the Tourism Congress and the extension of this right to non-accredited enterprises.

Clemente had appealed to Durano to delay the implementation of the tourism law. She said many accredited agencies were not able to participate in the selection of nominees to head the newly created agencies under the DOT, namely the Tourism Promotions Board, Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority, and the Duty Free Philippines Corp.

Clemente also said that the DOT has started creating positions “with overlapping and duplicating functions.”

ADMINISTRATIVE CODE ALEJANDRA CLEMENTE ALMA JIMENEZ CHARLIE UY DEXTER DEYTO AND JAIME CURA DURANO DUTY FREE PHILIPPINES CORP FEDERATION OF TOURISM INDUSTRIES GENE BANGAYAN TOURISM TOURISM CONGRESS
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