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Privatize NAIA or the government

Grace Poe and Jaime Bautista

Going by the logic of Senator Grace Poe to privatize the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, may I ask, with due respect: Why not propose also to privatize Congress?

It has been said that “beneath the ocean’s waves lie many tiny and wonderful sea creatures.” True. But in the case of some government programs, it is the opposite that is more believable.

The overture to privatize NAIA is unsupported neither by reason or sound argument nor any philosophy. It looks to me that one of the chief aims of the move is to X out a martyr from its name which is tantamount to assassinating Ninoy Aquino for the second time. The puzzle pieces seem starting to connect.

It is frustrating indeed (and a shame) that brownouts persist to besiege our premiere airport. But worse, some officials think that privatizing NAIA is the solution. Such a flimsy line of reasoning, more embarrassing (internationally) than “brownouts.” The fact is, most of the world’s premiere airports are state-owned – for sane reasons that cover multiple national development interests and national security. Imbecilic.

“Ingenious” souls argue that NAIA would be better off managed by a private corporation, due the bumbling of its administrators. But this is like admitting all our government officials are incompetent and helpless in the face of the numerous lingering problems we, Filipinos, are constantly bedeviled with. Are they, in effect, proposing to privatize even Malacanang?

NAIA brownout

Katatapos lang umugong muli sa media kamakailan ang ingay na i-privatize ang NAIA, tapos biglang nag-brownout ulit sa nasabing problemadong airport. (Just days after the siren sounded anew in media to privatize NAIA, there the brownout hit again the said beleaguered airport). How is that?

For all we know, corruption (as in the case of most problems in the country) may have a great deal to do with the brownouts, tech glitches, inconveniences, incompetencies, etc. in NAIA.

“That’s the standard technique of privatization: defund, make sure things don’t work, people get angry, you hand it over to private capital.” – Noam Chomsky

Clearly, the problem is not NAIA as a premiere airport, run and owned by the government, but the government people who manage it, including (incidentally) those who openly/covertly push to privatize it. The issue is not whether NAIA is being operated by the government or private sector. It is rather whether or not the people behind it are capable and good-hearted or inept and crooked-minded.

“Privatization is more efficient and effective in some cases, but not in intelligence.” – Valerie Plame

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