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Mueller can’t understand our work culture, Nufam says after ‘sleeping’ claim
Published:  Jun 17, 2016 1:03 PM
Updated: 4:02 PM

The National Union of Flight Attendants Malaysia (Nufam) has blasted outgoing Malaysia Airlines chief executive officer Christoph Mueller for saying he had to slash 6,000 jobs at the airline as many were doing nothing with some even sleeping in the hangars.

Nufam said as an outsider, Christoph did not understand Malaysian work culture.

“The problem with him is he is an outsider and may not understand the culture of workers in this country.

“When workers sleep, there may be a reason why they sleep. Is sleep not important for the workers to recover their energy?

“He needs to understand the workers in operations work in the range of 24 hours and some do overtime, causing them to be exhausted,” it said in a statement today.

Nufam added that there was no reason for workers to come to work simply to sleep.

“Why sleep at the office? Might as well sleep at home which is more comfortable or take leave if they are not well-rested,” it said.

Nufam also questioned if Mueller thought members of the cabin crew were also sleeping on the job.

“If they are sleeping, who are the one preparing food for passengers? Ghosts?

“Even the cabin crew need sleep as it is important to be fresh for long flights,” he said.

Furthermore, Nufam said airlines such as Virgin even encourages their employees to take a nap if they are tired, describing it as a compassionate company and do not see workers as mere “spare parts”.

“Sleeping is not an excuse for a company like MAS to sack workers.

“We believe that Mueller, with his tight schedule, will also feel drowsy and would take a nap when he has the chance,” it said.

Nufam said Mueller’s comment was hurtful to the 6,000 out of 20,000 employees who were let go, calling it “egoistic”.

Mueller in an interview with German broadcaster Deutsche Welle said he found many workers doing nothing when he took over Malaysia Airlines as CEO.

“Many of the 20,000 employees who worked for the airline had nothing to do. In fact, when I walked through the hangars, people were sleeping. That's why I had to radically cut 6,000 jobs,” he was quoted as saying.

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