Friday, 27 April 2012


As the sentiment for the share swap and the CCF is negative, no amount of plans and implementation rolled out from Management from this point onwards will bring positive results as the productivity and loyalty to the programme is already flawed and damaged.

Therefore, the membership of the Board and the senior management must be examined and reconstituted with a view to rally the entire organization to common objectives for the good of MAS.  People with high integrity, the right knowledge, experience and with the national interest at heart, should provide the leadership of the organization as soon as possible.

Friday April 27, 2012

Is the AirAsia-MAS share swap off?

Friday Reflections - By B.K. Sidhu

Rumours are swirling around that the AirAsia-Malaysia Airlines (MAS) share swap and even the collaboration is off.
Early this week, a news report from Singapore said that threats by the national carrier's 20,000 employees had pushed Putrajaya to unravel the tie-up between AirAsia and MAS.
A day later, a local report said the share swap would be an item on the agenda at Sunday's Umno supreme council meeting.
Yesterday, the opposition said the Government should admit that the MAS-AirAsia share swap was a mistake.
Some blogs have gone to the extent of explaining in great detail why the share swap should not have occurred in the first place.
(Click below for more details)
Some say the announcement will be made by the powers that be to scrap the share swap mid next week while others say it will be within the next one to two weeks.
MAS has eight unions and associations and they have come together to form a group to oppose the share swap. The group is against the share swap, not so much the collaboration, and it claims that it represents most of the 20,000 MAS employees.
The group issued a memorandum to the Prime Minister and gave reasons why the deal should be called off in February. Last month, the memo was circulated to several MPs.
This topic has been discussed by many quarters, including the powers that be, and even the views of former MAS managing director Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Abdul Rahman were sought.
The question that remains unanswered is whether the share swap has really been called off, or it is still intact, amid all the objections.
For that, we have to wait, but if you ask AirAsia supremo Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, he was reported to have said that “media report saying the Government has decided to unwind the deal is not true.''
Even Abdul Aziz also believes that the deal is still intact.
MAS Employees Union (Maseu) president Alias Aziz said the union “will continue with its fight for the share swap to be dismantled because it favours AirAsia.''
But this has been refuted by Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Dr Awang Adek who felt it was not one sided.
So long as there is no share swap, both airlines can cooperate and Alias says MAS works with many other airlines including Qantas, Singapore Airlines and even Cathay Pacific.
“The share swap must be cancelled. There is conflict of interest,'' Alias said yesterday.
The share swap and collaboration was forged between the two airlines August last year and as a result of that, Fernandes and his partner Kamarudin Meranun sit on the board of MAS by virtue of their 20% stake in MAS.
Intact or not, the entire share swap and collaboration has come under the spotlight since it was inked and the changes made do not favour the staff. Some have said there is erosion in value and decline in staff morale.
But despite turbulent times, the staff have done what is expected of them and the on-time performance has averaged 92% the past four months.
For an airline to take off, there are 60 different activities that need to be done and everything has to be done in sync so that the take-off is on time.
These includes the technical checks, booking and sales of tickets, fuelling, getting the food prepared and despatched onboard, all the safety aspects, pilots and crew arriving on time and passengers taking their seats before the take-off.
There are about 100 take-offs in a day and imagine the work involved in putting a flight in the air without the support of the staff, this would have been a very difficult task.
Whether it is for the better or worse for the share swap to be scrapped, the thing that needs fixing fairly quickly is the element of trust and confidence. There is distrust and disengagement. And that is a huge challenge in itself.


  1. If the top management and BOD have any shred of honour left in them, in the light of
    alarming allegations of incompetence, they all must resign to save themselves and the country leaderships from further embarrassment.

    One MH

  2. Totally agree the lost of confidence that has to be addressed now.
    MAS brand gets eroded as service of employees is corelated to morale.

    And the conflict of interest and erosion of competition to the detriment of consumers is difficult to deny.

    Frequent traveller on MAS

  3. "Having said that the country was on the brink of bankruptcy during Abdullah Badawi’s time, it is amazing how now, under Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak, Idris Jala turns around and says that the country’s economy is peachy-rosy and honky-dory so that Najib can squander so much in so short a time as the GE13 approaches. This native from the highlands of Bario truly deserves to be called ‘the turn-around expert’. "

    Be careful of Jala, the master of turn around !

    Roti jala