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DOTr Sec. Bautista calls on airport media to remain his friends, allies

DOTr Secretary Jaime Bautista
DOTr Secretary Jaime Bautista receives a plaque of appreciation from Airport Press Club (APC) President Ariel Fernandez. At left is APC Vice President Itchie G. Cabayan. (JERRY S. TAN)

Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Jaime J. Bautista has called on the airport in-house media to remain as his close friends and allies, citing how they have supported him via their coverage, practically throughout his career spanning nearly a quarter of a century to date.

Speaking at the induction of the Airport Press Club, Bautista said he was very pleased to finally be able to spend some quality time with old friends from the media who cover the airport.

In congratulating APC president Ariel Fernandez, Bautista also cited him for the help he extended when he interviewed him (Bautista) and airport general manager Cesar Chiong on what measures have been taken regarding the brownout that hit the NAIA Terminal 3 recently.

Bautista said that like Fernandez, he remembers and thanks those covering him when he was at the helm of the Philippine AirLines, adding that his recollection of stories written throughout those years has been of kind support to him and the national flag carrier.

“That is partly why I simply cannot turn down your invitation to join you today. The flip side of my reason for being here has to do with my current job as transportation secretary. You must be aware that the scope of my work no longer just involves a commercial airline, not just the aviation sector. My job now encompasses the whole transport industry of the country. Part of the job includes taking the flag for anything that goes wrong in the route, maritime railway and aviation sectors of transportation,” Bautista said

Since it is his first time to hold a government post, Bautista bared that he used the first month of his job learning about the other transport sectors.

While he can easily answer any questions about types of aircraft inflight catering airplane leasing, pilot and cabinet crew training, route, network fleet expansion or even airports, Bautista said that he is now just starting to understand the intricacies of trains, subways support and seas, as well as parties and kinds of public utility vehicles.

Thus, the DOTr Secretary called on those who have been covering him all these years to continue supporting him “in this most challenging job of my professional career.”

Itchie G. Cabayan
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