Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año on Thursday stressed that airline companies should not sell flight tickets if it remains unclear they cannot land on a specific local government unit (LGU).
He issued the call as the number of locally stranded individuals (LSI) with flight tickets have ballooned as their scheduled departure to their destinations were cancelled.
Año stressed over an interview with GMA News that the flights must be well-coordinated with local government units to avoid cancellations.
Año deplored the practice of some airlines that sell tickets without the assurance if the flights will proceed as scheduled.
“Kasi ito nga ‘yung pinagmumulan ng LSI, may dala dala silang ticket, pagdating doon ay bigla naman cancelled ‘yung flight (This is the root of the LSI who bought tickets but whose flights were cancelled when they arrive at the airport),’’ he added.
This came amid reports in the previous days about the situation of locally stranded individuals (LSI) in Metro Manila.
He noted that if there is a 24 to 48-hour cancellation of flights, passengers could be accommodated in the airport.
There are also areas allocated forLSIs at the Villamor Airbase Elementary School and at Fort Bonifacio.
“If the cancellation is longer, passengers will be transported to their respective residences,” Año said.
“Ihahatid pabalik kung saan siya nanggaling, ihahatid ng pulis ‘yan kahit saang region pa ‘yan para di ka mag-aantay sa wala. Kukunin na lang natin ‘yung contact numbers (The police will take them to their residence in any region so as not to make them wait for a long time. We will just get their contact numbers),’’ he said.
Año also reminded the public that the moratorium on the travel remains in Regions VI, VIII, CARAGA and Cebu province to prevent the spread of COVID-19.