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Saturday, December 9, 2023

Senator urges OTS to enforce one-strike policy

The Office for Transportation Security (OTS) must enforce a one-strike policy against its personnel found involved in wrongdoings, Senator Grace Poe said Thursday.

She said the measure will weed out the undesirables from the good ones at the agency and will help restore the integrity of the office tainted by corruption and controversy.

“What we need in our airport are those who will watch our security, hindi bantay-salakay (not robber-guards),” Poe said.

The chairperson of the Senate committee on public services said the toughest actions should be put in place against erring OTS personnel to send a signal that the office is serious in reforming its ranks.

Investigations should be conducted swiftly and convictions backed by solid evidence to leave no room for intervention, she said.

Poe said the latest incident involving a female OTS staffer who swallowed US$300 worth of bills supposedly stolen from a passenger showed how some could do the unthinkable to carry out an illegal deed.

OTS management must “show its mettle in carrying out an overhaul in its system plagued with inefficiency and corruption through the years,” she reiterated.

Poe suggested a review of its recruitment policies alongside the conduct of extensive background checks on current employees.

The agency should also work toward improving the compensation and benefits of its personnel, she added.

“We have to distinguish the bad eggs who are spoiling the image of the OTS. This is not fair to those faithfully doing their duties and a stumbling block in providing better service to our people,” Poe said.

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