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PHILIPPINE AIRLINES CANCELLED DUE TO SHORTAGE OF PILOTS


Good morning, passengers, and welcome aboard. We're expecting clear skies today, but we're out of pilots.
MANILA, Philippines – National air carrier Philippine Airlines had to cancel at least five flights Saturday — one to Hong Kong, the others to domestic destinations — after several Airbus A320 pilots decamped for jobs abroad.
The decamping of professionals, including teachers and nurses, for better jobs abroad — has long plagued the impoverished Southeast Asian nation. About 10 percent of the population of 94 million works abroad, sending home the money that provides the bloodline for the economy.
  • PAL spokesman Jonathan Gesmundo went on TV and radio stations to apologize to the public for the cancellations, which he said were caused by the sudden departure of nearly dozen pilots for better-paying jobs overseas.
  • He said the pilots did not inform the management, but that this was not a group action.
  • "In the past few days, pilots had not been reporting for duty. This has caused problems for us," Gesmundo said.
  • He said the airline was adjusting its schedule and will probably bring in bigger aircraft to accommodate the stranded passengers.
The indebted flag carrier has said it would lay off some of its 8,000-strong work force because of financial losses in the third straight year.
Source: AP
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