MANILA’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport could be renamed “Paliparang Pandaigdig ng Pilipinas” through a new bill filed in the Philippine House of Representatives.
Authored by Deputy Speaker Paolo Duterte, Marinduque Representative Lord Allan Jay Velasco, and ACT-CIS Representative Eric Go Ya, House Bill No. 7031 proposes a change to the airport’s name.
“NAIA is the international gateway of the Philippines, being the biggest and largest international airport in the country. As such, there is a need to identify the same as belonging to the Philippines. Hence, the proposed renaming to ‘Paliparang Pandaigdig ng Pilipinas,’” they said in the bill’s explanatory note.
They added, “With the proposed name, the airport will easily be identified as the international doorway of the country, in view of it being in Filipino language and branding it as the international airport of the Philippines.”
Rep. Duterte also stressed that the proposed name “bears no color, no political agenda.”
“We need a more representative branding for the international gateway of our country, thus our proposal renaming NAIA to the Paliparang Pandaigdig ng Pilipinas. Aside from it bearing our country’s name, it is in our national language,” he explained.
“We want it to reflect the legacy of the Filipino people, our everyday heroes. The name bears no color, no political agenda. It only signifies our warmth as Filipinos in welcoming our own kababayans and foreign visitors,” he said.
Velasco added, “I am confident that by doing so, it will provide us a competitive edge as our neighbors open their doors, too, to visitors.”
“Changing the name of NAIA to Paliparang Pandaigdig ng Pilipinas gives every Filipino a great sense of pride and ownership of the country’s biggest and largest international airport,” he continued.
Yap, for his part, pointed out that the country’s airport should reflect the country and its people.
“Marami naman na personalidad na karapat-dapat rin na sa kanila ipangalan ang institusyon, daan, at iba pa. Pero pagdating sa ating paliparan, dapat ay sumalamin ito sa bansa at sa sambayanang Pilipino (There are other personalities who are also worthy to have institutions, roads and others named after them. But when it comes to the airport, it should reflect the country and the Filipino people),” he said.
NAIA used to be called the Manila International Airport until Republic Act No. 6639 was enacted into law in 1987 that renamed it after the late Senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr., who was assassinated at the airport in 1983.