THAI staff angered by executive promotions

THAI staff angered by executive promotions

Union says promotions can wait until company is restructured

Representatives of the Thai Airways International workers' union and THAI employees show off a letter asking the airline to reconsider the promotions of executives. (Photo: Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)
Representatives of the Thai Airways International workers' union and THAI employees show off a letter asking the airline to reconsider the promotions of executives. (Photo: Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

The Thai Airways International workers' union is protesting against the appointment of the THAI board chairman's wife to a higher position, saying it undermines trust in the beleaguered organisation.

The protest comes as the national carrier prepares to offer employees an early retirement programme in the middle of this month as it seeks ways to cut costs.

The union on Friday issued a letter asking the company to reconsider its promotion of executives. The letter said the promotion attracted flak from inside and outside the organisation and affected confidence in the company’s management in a time of crisis.

There was no urgent need for the company to promote executives before it is restructured, the letter said. Unity within the organisation was key to the success of the rehabilitation plan.

The union said the promotion also affected the confidence of the company’s creditors and damaged its image as an ethical organisation.

Acting THAI president Chansin Treenuchagron sought to explain the promotions of over 60 executives, among them Ponguma Didyasarin, the wife of the chairman of the board, ACM Chaiyapruk Didyasarin. He said they had been selected by a seven-member, high-level committee to replace those who retired at the end of September.

Ms Ponguma, a level-9 executive, has been promoted to acting director on level 10.  

Mr Chansin also said that the THAI board had no plan to dissolve its subsidiary Thai Smile Airways.

THAI on Friday also held a staff meeting at its head office to brief employees on the voluntary severance package it plans to offer in the middle of this month. Executives also updated them on the progress of the rehabilitation and plans for revenue generation amid severe restrictions on travel.

The flag carrier received court approval for its debt restructuring on Sept 14. The company, hard hit by the pandemic, had total liabilities of 332.2 billion baht at the end of June.


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