“No agreement was reached on the table,” said Soco’s lawyer Gonzalo Malig-on Jr. after an hour-long mediation facilitated by Jose Ramiro Carpio Jr. at the Philippine Mediation Center.
Ivan Hendry Gaw, the airline’s manager of guest services who represented Cebu Air Inc. refused to comment and left immediately after the hearing.
The next mediation hearing is set on November 27.
If no settlement is reached, the case will be returned to the Mandaue City Regional Trial Court for trial.
“I can’t discuss the details of what we discussed because of the rules of mediation,” said Soco.
He said his complaint about the airline’s practices was also experienced by many other passengers.
“This is not about money, this is about principles. I am fighting this out for the people,” he said.
Soco filed a complaint against Cebu Pacific in May 24, 2011 or about a month after the airline allegedly bumped him off the Cebu-bound flight 5J553.
He said he showed up at the airline’s check-in counter at the Terminal 3 of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila at 9 a.m. to board the flight scheduled to leave at 10:10 a.m. but the ground staff refused to accept him.
Soco said no one from the airline informed him earlier that he was bumped off his flight.
He didn’t receive a refund or replacement ticket either.
Soco, owner of the Coffee Dream chain of coffesshops and vice gubernatorial candidate running as an independent in the 2013 elections, said he hasn’t flown on Cebu Pacific since then.
“When you do business, you have to be sensitive to the needs of customers especially if you are a public utility company,” he said. /Jucell Marie P. Cuyos, Correspondent