Current Affairs

What happened to the RM3 million lifeline given to Malindo Airways Sdn Bhd to pay its workers?

Batu Kawan MP Kasthuri Patto today questioned the Human Resources Ministry about the whereabouts of a RM3 million lifeline given to Malindo Airways Sdn Bhd to pay its workers, after the airline retrenched an estimate of 2,200 workers.

“According to a statement from Nufam (National Union of Flight Attendants), Malindo Air received at least RM3 million to pay their staff salaries, including for their ground staff. However, the workers began being retrenched starting March this year. Their wages were unpaid for months and a 24-hour notice was given in their retrenchment letters.

Malindo Air has undergone further retrenchments to cut costs during the Covid-19 pandemic. They are expected to retrench 2,200 employees.

I heard your replies earlier and it seems that there are a lot of good initiatives laid out by the government to help them. However, one of their grouses is being put on a list and returning to work once the Covid-19 situation settles down. To be put on a KIV list. However, until now, I have not heard whether they would be placed on the KIV list,” she said

Kasthuri also enquired if the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) would conduct an investigation into how Malindo had spent the money.

Kasthuri pointed out that those who were retrenched were mainly ground staff who earned modest wages, including those than only earned slightly more than RM 1,0000. So who exactly benefitted from the RM 3 million?

“Whose salaries were paid with the RM3 million? As those who were retrenched are ground staff who earned slightly more than RM2,000, slightly more than RM 1,000 or slightly more than RM3,000. So who is benefiting from the RM3 million?”

Human Resources Minister Datuk Seri M. Saravanan said that the ministry would be meeting airline management today, together with the Social Security Organisation (Socso) and Department of Labour, to address worker woes.

Human Resources Minister Datuk Seri M. Saravanan has confirmed he will look into it.

Nufam had issued a statement criticising Malindo’s announcement of more job cuts last week. “We believe Malindo’s owners can do other things to save their jobs,” it said.

Malindo’s management appears to be using the most drastic way to retrench its workers. The question is are they insolvent or heading towards bankruptcy” – Nufam

Free Malaysia Today reported that it had sighted an internal memo from Malindo chief executive Mushafiz Mustafa Bakri to staff saying that there would be further retrenchments “within the next few days” in yet another cost-cutting exercise, following the damages brought by the Covid-19 pandemic, which had gravely affected the tourism sector.

In addition to approaching the Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) for help, Nufam has also urged Malindo staff members to lodge complaints for wrongful dismissal, after the retrenchments, adding that the compensation and terms of dismissal were very unreasonable.

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