Palace defends MARINA from protesters

MANILA, March 26 (PNA) — There is no truth to claims of the United Filipino Seafarers (UFS) that the Maritime Industry Authority (Marina) has mismanaged the maritime industry, Malacanang said Wednesday.

Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda in a Palace media briefing raised the issue in reaction to Wednesday morning protests by the UFS Seafarers in Marina offices in Manila.

Reports showed that the group claimed Marina even failed to pass the second audit of EU’s European Maritime Safety Agency (Emsa) last October.

Because of this education and training certificates issued by the government to Filipino seafarers would no longer be honored by EU shipowners and regulators.

“That’s not true. We disagree with that,” Lacierdas said, adding that Marina was currently implementing a number of reforms.

“Merong lumabas na balita na bumagsak daw…ang sa Emsa, mali pa ‘yon,” he added.

Lacierda then noted that according to Transportation and Communications Operations (DOTC) Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya, there has been no news yet as to whether Marina has either passed or failed the Emsa audit. (PNA)