By MORRIS ARON
In a paid advert appearing in local dailies yesterday, KALPA distanced itself from a recent decision by KQ to retrench 578 workers, 126 of whom are said to have retired voluntarily.
KALPA accused KQ of retrenching local staff while continuing to employ foreign workers.
The organisation called for the firing of the current management and executives including chief executive officer Titus Naikuni.
“We do not believe that the same management...that has steered the airline to this position are the ones best qualified to lead us out,” the advert read in part.
KALPA said that KQ is currently at a loss on how do defend itself from increased competition in the aviation industry “after years of misadvised decision-making and is relying on knee-jerk reactions to situations as they develop.”
The organisation also said KQ delayed in securing a Dreamliner, and by the time they acquire the first one at the end of this year, the competition (read Ethiopian Airlines) will have secured five.
“This shortsighted thinking has put the airline in the position it is now, and it is clear that the chickens have come home to roost,” said the statement signed by Captain Ronald Karauri, the general secretary and chief executive of KALPA.
KALPA also expressed concern that KQ management had no viable plan for the planned low cost subsidiary. The association said that KQ erred in planning to import a lower class Jambo Jet, saying it will pale in comparison to the better planned low cost airlines — EasyJet and Fast Jet.
KALPA also questioned KQ’s reasons for retrenchment (employee costs), saying direct operating costs had risen faster than the cost of labour. “... If the management had half the effort towards addressing direct operation costs as it does employee costs, KQ might just get on the right path,” said the Karauri.