KUALA LUMPUR – The plan by Khazanah Nasional to set up a special centre to provide ‘outplacement support’ for some 6,000 Malaysia Airlines (MAS) staff who will be made redundant as part of the airline’s restructuring has been lauded by three Members of Parliament.
The centre would focus on extending all relevant and required support to the employees leaving MAS, including professional, emotional, counselling and financial support to assist them in their transition to the next stage of their career.
In August, the government’s investment holding arm and MAS majority investor, announced a 12-point plan to revive the national flag carrier.
According to the MPs, Khazanah’s move shows its concern and compassion for the affected MAS staff.
Lenggong MP Datuk Shamsul Anuar Nasarah told Bernama Khazanah’s move gives the industry a good image.
“The outplacement plan is a complete package, with Khazanah looking at it from various perspectives — the morale, professional, financial and mental aspects of the staff.
“This has been well planned by Khazanah. The restructuring is unique, one that is rarely undertaken by other companies,” he said.
Shamsul Anuar said many airlines the world over face similar problems, adding Khazanah’s plan is the best formula for MAS.
Companies facing problems should not only think about how to restructure but also the future of their staff, who have helped to grow the company, he said.
“Khazanah is acting not only to ensure the future of the airline but also of staff affected by the restructuring. This should be emulated by other companies and industries especially in this country,” he said.
Kuala Selangor MP Datuk Irmohizam Ibrahim (pic) said Khazanah’s move shows the government’s, and especially Khazanah’s, concern for the wellbeing of MAS staff.
“It’s a proactive move, and it’s unique in the context of staff retrenchments in the country as it takes into account all aspects of the career transition of the 6,000 affected staff,” he said.
Irmorhizam said while many quarters have questioned why the restructuring was not done earlier, it should be remembered that the employee downsizing by Khazanah and MAS is only a last resort that takes into consideration the contributions and welfare of the staff.
He said the centre would focus on helping the transition of staff in three categories — early retirees, job seekers and potential entrepreneurs.
The government wants to show to the people that the restructuring benefits the affected employees and not penalise them, while other companies should emulate such a move and not just lay off workers indiscriminately, he said.
The move would bring a fresh start for MAS’ new era, he said, adding what is important is preserving the country’s image.
Irmohizam, who is also a member of a Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) special committee, said any restructuring process should be transparent.
Meanwhile, the MP for Sekijang, Anuar Manap, said this cabinet-approved move augurs well for all parties, adding that it would certainly be a win-win situation where while the national carrier is being put on track to profitability, the livelihoods of the staff would remain intact.
“This is a very humane, treating those not staying at MAS and kudos is due to the government, Khazanah and MAS for ensuring the wellbeing of those leaving MAS,” he said.
Anuar said having such outplacement support in place would help the 6,000 employees to rediscover their confidence and learn to effectively prepare themselves for their future in new areas. – Bernama