MyAirline to pay RM4.3mil in salaries to 158 employees

SUBANG JAYA: Troubled airline company MyAirline Sdn Bhd has agreed to pay 158 employees their salaries worth about RM4.3 million.

Malaysian Trade Union Congress (MTUC) secretary-general Kamarul Baharin Mansor said this agreement was achieved after an order issued by the Labour Department.

"MTUC was here to represent the staff, including pilots, crew and other staff members from MyAirline who had filed their claims to the Labour Department.

"The department said in total, 158 staff had filed their case with a total claim of about RM4.3 million," he told reporters outside the Labour Department office here, today.

Kamarul said he hoped more MyAirline staff would step forward and file their claims.

He added that they could do so at any Labour Department office nearby.

"I was also informed by the management of MyAirline that their salaries would be paid in January, when they have a new investor.

"However, we worry about the fate of the workers… what if this new investor does not happen? What will happen to the staff?

"We do not want the company to delay making payment in an attempt to move their assets before being declared bankrupt," said Kamarul.

It was the responsibility of the company to pay salaries, he added, whether or not a new investor was coming.

He also said the staff had claimed that the company never made the necessary payments to statutory and regulatory bodies such as the Employees Provident Fund (EPF), the Social Security Organisation (Socso), and the Inland Revenue Board (IRB), despite deducting their salaries.

"We doubt the honesty of MyAirline. I hope these agencies will take the initiative to call up the airlines and take necessary action."

Kamarul also urged the government to intervene and provide support for MyAirline staff.

He said Socso's Employment Insurance Scheme (EIS) would only cover the first three months, and the payment would continue decreasing in the following months that they are affected.

"They are officially still employed by the company. The company must be held accountable.

"Make a decision on their status whether they are still employed or not, so they are not left hanging."

On Oct 12, MYAirline announced the sudden suspension of its flight operations due to financial pressures.

Several reports also cited that the budget carrier was struggling financially as payments to its service providers were delayed and employees' salaries were not paid on time.

The Malaysian Aviation Commission had suspended MyAirline's air service licence on Nov 1.

Two weeks ago, it was reported that the now-fleetless airline was "still hopeful" of securing new investors to restore its service.

Six of its 10 aircrafts had been deregistered by its lessors, while another four had been returned to lessors but remained registered with Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM).

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