Cabin crew union ‘thankful’ for firing of Garuda boss

The Garuda Indonesia Cabin Crew Union (Ikagi) has thanked State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) Minister Erick Thohir for dismissing Ari Askhara as the national flag carrier’s president director following a smuggling case allegedly involving top executives of the airline.

“We kindly appreciate SOE Minister Erick Thohir’s decision to sack Ari Askhara from his position, and we also support Pak Erick’s quick response to the Harley-Davidson smuggling case,” Ikagi chairman Zaenal Muttaqin said at a press conference in Jakarta on Friday.

“During his time as Garuda Indonesia’s president director, his performance has always been controversial; thus, it has harmed passengers and employees,” he added.

Erick said on Thursday he would dismiss Ari following the discovery of a smuggled disassembled Harley-Davidson motorcycle and upmarket bicycles aboard a new Airbus A330-900 being delivered from France.

He cited an audit committee’s findings that the classic motorcycle had been ordered by someone identified as AA, the same initials as Ari Askhara.

Zaenal claimed this was not the first controversial action by his former boss.

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