KUALA LUMPUR – The appointment of Christoph R. Mueller as Chief Executive Officer of (CEO) of Malaysia Airlines Bhd (MAS NewCo) was based on his ability and experience in rehabilitating a troubled airline.
Deputy Finance Minister 1 Datuk Ahmad Maslan said the problems faced by Malaysia Airlines (MAS), was the same as that of Aer Lingus, which was successfully rehabilitated by Mueller when he joined the Irish airline.
“We chose Mueller as he had turned around Aer Lingus.We did not simply choose someone not qualified as the CEO,” he added.
Ahmad was replying a supplementary question from Senator Khairiah Mohamed in the Dewan Negara here today.
Khairiah had questioned why the top management of MAS NewCo comprised foreigners.
Ahmad pointed out that at the same time, MAS NewCo had retained the former MAS CEO, Ahmad Jauhari Yahya, as a non-executive director as his expertise and experience was still needed by the company.
In replying to Khairiah’s original question, he said to date, 5,500 employment opportunities at 30 companies had been made available to those MAS employees whose services had been terminated.
“At the same time, 2,611 other employees had registered with the Corporate Development Centre(CDC) established by Khazanah Nasional Bhd.
“The CDC has made available 448 programmes, among them being career counselling, entrepreneurship, retirement planning, basic training as well as skills in searching for jobs to enable the employees to plan their future,” he added.
According to Ahmad, the compensation and facilities provided for staff leaving MAS and those retained, cost RM1.5 billion.
“The government was also forced to spend RM19.2 billion from 2001-2014 to help MAS following the airlines’ failed privatisation in the 90s.
Khairiah had asked the government to state how the MAS rehabilitation plan would ensure the welfare of the terminated staff. – BERNAMA