Ihe opportunity for me to give the most current commentaries on the few development involving the latest development MAS has passed me. I was hospitalised since last Tuesday.
After undergoing fairly lengthy tests, it turns out I've been asthmatic for quite many months. Having undergone the treatment, I am feeling much better now. Not fully recovered, but physically better.
A word of advice: Never underestimate that common COUGH.
As much as I am yearning to comeback fighting on the MAS issues, I will have to pace myself. For one, I will have to analyse what was the meaning behind the meaning of Tun Dr Mahathir's supportive words for the swap excercise. He hoped MAS can learn how to reduce cost.
Thus I'll not start going Tora! Tora! Tora! to blast every other insider input I get but to compile and review the various views already expressed on the issue. A friendly, elderly and wiser advise told me to remain supportive of Dato Najib.
We'll start with Miriam Mokhtar's column on FMT here minus the caustic sarcasm part on Tan Sri Tajuddin Ramli. That issue will be covered differently. Remember that this blog was the one to debunk the RM8 billion slanderous claim on Tajuddin.
Not forgetting her terrible treatment of Pehin Seri Taib Mahmud leading to the Sarawak State Election in April 2011, the gist of Miriam's column provide a background view of this issue. She expressed the concern of opposition politicians like Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim and Dr Dzulkifli Ahmad on matter of competitiveness, monopoly and business fairplay.
After all, the Government embarked on an Airline Rationalisation Plan in 2005 to promote competition within local aviation industry but not saved from being shrouded with intrigue.
--------------------------------------------------------Why is the MAS/AirAsia merger necessary? Was it to help MAS or AirAsia? No one really knows as this deal is shrouded in mystery.--------------------------------------------------------
The fly-by-night people in charge of MAS are no better than a posse of cowboys. Why do we continue to tolerate the wasteful antics of our politicians who indulge in a game of real-life Monopoly and who use taxpayers’ money to bail out ailing companies?
In a perverse reversal of the saying “King Midas and his golden touch”, it appears that whatever BN-Umno politicians “touch” will always turn to dust and ashes.
This deal that is struck with MAS and AirAsia is another smack in the face for the public. What sort of responsible government allows such a merger to take place? By agreeing to this merger, the government has neglected to address healthy competition which in essence should benefit the airline customers, companies and the Malaysian economy.
What about fair trading practices? Or conflict of interest? Or share prices? Maybe the Securities Commission should start probing both AirAsia and MAS about insider trading or any other irregularities. What about the jets each carrier uses, the agreements and maintenance contracts signed with Boeing and Airbus? Who honours what? ...
...With this latest defrauding of the public purse, how much of the taxpayers’ money has gone unaccounted for? This government is neither transparent nor accountable. It does not adhere to its own catch-phrase, “People First, Performance Now”. It doesn’t even match up to its own Key Performance Indicators.
In the late 1960s and 1970s, working for MAS was both a privilege and carried great prestige. Today, there is a different portrait of the MAS employees. Many are unhappy and morale is at an all-time low. Disaffection with MAS is felt by cabin, flight and ground crews including engineering and maintenance staff.
When Singapore Airlines (SIA) and MAS emerged from the ashes of the now-defunct Malaysia-Singapore Airlines (MSA), SIA went from strength to strength while MAS was left in the doldrums....
...In these days of rising fuel costs and tight profit margins, the airline industry is more competitive than ever. However, the Malaysian Cabinet denies putting government officials in charge of a global brand.
These officials are clueless about most things and have no experience of running an airline. The first thing to effect a turnaround should have been to disband the senior management, all of whom are mere government puppets.
If there was one brief moment of respite for MAS staff, it was when Idris Jala took over and was “praised” for turning the company around. But even simpletons realise that selling your best assets just to make the books look good, is not financial wizardry. Many in MAS are still angry with Jala.
Asset stripping was Jala’s forte. He also engaged in cost-cutting by reducing many of the privileges enjoyed by the staff without addressing the problems created by Umnoputras and BN politicians who treated the airline like it was their own private transport.
Jala, having collected his performance bonus, then entered the government’s bloated political élite club via the back door and became a senator and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department.
So if Jala has turned MAS around, why is the MAS-AirAsia merger necessary? Was it to help MAS or AirAsia? No one really knows as this deal is shrouded in mystery.
Mahathir remarked that the MAS-AirAsia merger was a “very good idea” as “AirAsia can learn about the experience of MAS and MAS can learn how to reduce costs as done by AirAsia”....
...Being held accountable
When will we have a head of MAS who is brave enough to say “No” to the government? MAS was a fine airline decades ago and many Malaysians were proud to fly with it. These days, MAS is overpriced and uncompetitive.
AirAsia is nothing to shout about. Customer service is non-existent and it is not cheap flying AirAsia on some long-haul flights. The merger will be another nail in the coffin with regard to competition....