MANILA, Philippines – The violent mauling of columnist Ramon Tulfo by celebrity couple Raymart Santiago and Claudine Barretto strikes another blow to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, which was once dubbed the world’s worst airport by a travel blog.
In a statement, Zambales Rep. Mitos Magsaysay said the mauling reflects negatively on the competence of Philippine airports and could discourage tourists from traveling to the country.
"Personnel on the ground perhaps need to be retrained in client relations and security so that violent incidents like what happened last week will not happen again,” she said.
Magsaysay said airport security should be able to respond to violent situations.
She also said airlines “should be able to cater to the volume of their clients, because when they book for a trip, it entails proper service.”
“Whether it is for regular or promotional fare, they should be ensured that they will be seated properly, their luggage stored promptly and that they will get to their destination on time," she said.
Tulfo earlier said the fight started when he started taking pictures of Barretto castigating a Cebu Pacific ground crew over their offloaded luggage. The veteran journalist has filed charges of grave coercion and libel against the showbiz couple.
He earlier described airline security as “inutile and useless” during the brawl.
Transport Secretary Mar Roxas said the brawl was an isolated incident and is not a reason for concern over public security.
He also said he receives reports that some people in Santiago’s group are mixed martial arts trainees. “Maari na na-overpower nila ‘yung mga ilang security natin,” explained Roxas.
He said the lack of CCTV cameras at NAIA Terminal 3 will be addressed soon after the government settles court issues with T3's Japanese contractor, Takenaka.