NAIA 3: a cautionary tale

THE QUAGMIRE of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3—which would have been our main gateway to the world—is a cautionary tale of an epic scale for our country. It dramatizes questions of paramount importance for our country and, perhaps, for many developing countries as well:

Which should take precedence in terms of state policy and action: the anti-corruption value or realpolitik? Should, or can a compromise be reached between these two different guides to action?

It’s amazing how many have so easily forgotten why the NAIA 3 contract of the Philippine International Airport Terminals Corp. (PIATCo), a consortium dominated by an obscure Chinese-Filipino firm and the German Fraport AG, was aborted.

(more…)

Continue Reading NAIA 3: a cautionary tale

Whatever happened to?

A FAVORITE feature of mine in this newspaper had been the occasional “Whatever happened to…?”, which followed up what happened later on to news—controversies, crimes, accusations—that had been reported.

It was a reality-check of sorts, as a follow-up often disclosed that seemingly shocking accusations, for instance, were exaggerated. Often, the whatever-happened-to follow-ups were disappointing, as for instance, it turned out that the only thing that happened regarding a crime story after two years was that “the case is pending in the court.” The feature was also a means to pressure authorities to fulfill their promises.

With the start of a new year, it would be useful to list down several “whatever-happened-to’s” of national interest, and revisit it every six months:

(more…)

Continue Reading Whatever happened to?