SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau
The House Committee on Transportation chaired by Rep. Cesar Sarmiento (Lone District, Catanduanes) on Wednesday approved House Bills 8289 and 2274, both seeking to rename the Clark International Airport in Angeles City, Pampanga as Diosdado Macapagal International Airport.
House Bill 8289 is authored by Senior Deputy Majority Leader Rodante Marcoleta (Party list, 1-Sagip), Majority Leader Rolando Andaya Jr. (1st District, Camarines Sur), Deputy Speaker Arthur Yap, and Rep. Carmelo Lazatin II (1st District, Pampanga) while HB 2274 was filed by Rep. Aurelio Gonzales (3rd District, Pampanga).
Stressing the primacy of the airport in terms of aviation as well as in the international air transportation community, the bills provide it is but fitting that the airport shall be named in honor of former President Diosdado Macapagal, a Filipino with a sterling legacy and incomparable distinction as a respected leader, champion of the poor, true statesman, and a nationalist of unquestionable integrity.
The bills also stressed that the Clark International Airport is the most viable and convenient airport of choice for travelers from North and Central Luzon and the northern Metro Manila area.
During the hearing, Sarmiento read Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Pampanga Resolution No. 5124 which was issued on July 27, 2018, entitled “A Resolution Urging His Excellency President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and both Houses of Congress to Issue a Presidential Proclamation and Appropriate Legislation, Respectively, Reverting or Renaming the Clark International Airport located at the Clark Freeport Zone in Pampanga to Diosdado Macapagal International Airport.”
Alexander Cauguiran, the Officer-in-Charge/Acting President and CEO of Clark International Airport Corporation (CIAC), said during the hearing that they previously opposed the renaming of Diosdado Macapagal International Airport to Clark International Airport for some reasons. The renaming was done by the airport’s previous Board during the administration of former President Benigno Aquino III.
On the occasion of the 108th birthday of Macapagal last month, Cauguiran said the present Board of Directors of the Clark International Airport approved a resolution renaming the airport as Diosdado Macapagal International Airport.
“To my mind, there was a violation made by the previous Board, that is why we in the present Board corrected it. We timed it on the 108th birthday of our former President. (It’s) Long overdue, but justice finally is on hand,” said Cauguiran.
Former President Macapagal is the father of former President and now Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and considered one of the greatest sons of the province of Pampanga.
Macapagal, popularly known as the “poor boy from Lubao,” became the ninth president of the Philippines. He imbued in his family the same values that endeared him to the nation. | Eddie Galvez