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PAL cancels flights due to strike

MANILA, Philippines—Philippine Airlines canceled all its flights up to 6 p.m. on September 27 after the airline’s workers went on strike.

PAL spokesperson Cielo Villaluna announced at around 9:30 a.m. that all flights have been canceled.

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Members of PAL Employees’ Association (Palea), the company’s labor union, reported for work on Tuesday, but refused to work starting 7 a.m. No PAL flights have taken off from Manila since then.

PAL Employees Association (PALEA) president Gerry Rivera said union members in flight reservations, catering, check-in counters, and other ground services in Manila stopped working from 7 a.m.

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“We would like to apologize to the riding public for any inconvenience but we were pushed to the wall,” Rivera said in an interview.

“We are not calling this a strike. This is a protest action. The operations in Manila have been totally paralyzed,” he added.

Rivera said PALEA was forced to act as management had begun implementing its outsourcing plan at the flag carrier although the union had challenged it in the Court of Appeals.

“In recent days, the work in the check-in counters was already being given to administrative personnel,” Rivera said.

Villaluna said affected passengers would have their flight rebooked, and warned PALEA members that it was against the law to disrupt airport operations.

“We are studying our legal options. Our lawyers are already on the field but it is clear that disrupting airport operations is a crime,” Villaluna said.

She said PAL was doing its best to resume flights.

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TAGS: Air Transport, Civil Aviation, Labor, News, Protest, Strike
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