AirAsia man summoned by cops over tweet criticising airport’s hygiene

Aziz said he would be making an appointment with the police to have his statement recorded on Wednesday. — Malay Mail file pic
Aziz said he would be making an appointment with the police to have his statement recorded on Wednesday. — Malay Mail file pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 24 — An AirAsia employee has been summoned by the police after he posted a tweet lamenting the poor hygiene of KLIA2 today.

AirAsia head of communications Mohd Aziz Laikar Ali is scheduled to have his statement taken on Wednesday for “hurting” the image of Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB) with his tweet.

Aziz had posted a video showing a rubbish bin filled with maggots at the airport, while questioning a “fancy” statement issued by MAHB last week about its commendable performance in airport management for the month of October this year.

“@MY_Airports today issued a fancy statement saying KLIA & #klia2 had exceeded the service quality targets of #Mavcom’s Quality of Service (QoS) framework. 

“Here is a video of termites at rubbish can located at gate p6 this morning while there was a departure to Perth,” Aziz wrote, later correcting termites to maggots.

“So basically at 8.30am today, the police called me, saying that MAHB has lodged a report against me. They said this is regarding the tweet I posted. The tweet was about a trash can that had maggots

“The police said the words that I used hurt the image of MAHB. That’s the word used. The report is based on my alleged intention to hurt MAHB’s image,” Aziz told Malay Mail when contacted.

Aziz said he would be making an appointment with the police to have his statement recorded on Wednesday, after his leave ends.

“These are all the facts available, and I can only give more information once I meet the police on Wednesday with AirAsia’s lawyers. I have informed the top management of the report and they have expressed solidarity with me,” Aziz added.

AirAsia Group Bhd and MAHB have been engaged in a war of words for some time, mostly over the budget carrier’s dissatisfaction with MAHB’s alleged below-par airport maintenance efforts.

AirAsia has also refused to collect MAHB’s increased passenger service charge (PSC) of RM73, over which the latter is suing the low-cost carrier and a subsidiary.

According to The Edge, MAHB issued legal letters to both AirAsia and its long-haul unit, AirAsia X Bhd (AAX), in October to demand payment of outstanding PSC for international departures since July 1.

AirAsia has accrued around RM9.4 million in unpaid PSC while AAX was hit with a lawsuit seeking RM26.72 million for similar arrears.

AirAsia Malaysia chief executive Riad Asmat, however, said the firm had been dutifully collecting RM50 in PSC per person since 2017 and remitted RM478 million in such fees to the MAHB unit operating klia2.

However, he said his firm stopped collecting the PSC when MAHB announced that this would be raised to RM73 at the start of 2018, as the airline disagreed that the fee should be the same at both the full-fledged KLIA and the low-cost terminal of KLIA2.