What goes around, comes around
E DII TO RII A L
The arrogance of the former Cyprus Airways staff has no bounds. The bad attitude of some, often displayed in-flight and at check-in counters, showed its ugly face when the (not) 560 staff showed up at the Ministry of Finance to demonstrate the airline’s closure. Some shouted and others pushed, trying to get into the building, demanding that they be heard by the Minister, their main argument being that they should be re-hired by a soon-to-be established company.
As if the average 48,000 euros each will get in compensation is not enough, nor the 6-month unemployment benefit based on their high-wage levels, they now have the audacity to keep these pay scales and return to their world of privileges and low productivity. (Remember when pilots landed in Paphos instead of Larnaca, simply because their shift was over?)
But what broke the camel’s back and turned public option against them was the nerve with which the scenes of emotional drama unfurled, a weeping Melpomene in ancient Greek tragedy. “Who will feed our children?” some howled, “We are being thrown onto the streets” others wailed, regardless if their ‘children’ are grown-up adults or university students. The public shrugged these cries, as many are on the verge of poverty, some have no others barely have enough food children.
These protestors are the same people who smirked as their ‘colleagues’ at Eurocypria went on a short-lived demonstration when the charter operator closed down 50 months ago.
At the time, Cyprus Airways ground staff, cabin crew and pilots, all of whom earned three times more than their charter buddies, hollered “Better them, not us” and allowed Eurocypria to be sacrificed in the name of political favouritism and union cockiness.
In fact, when Eurocypria closed, its fleet of six had just been reduced to four, but was operating to 72 seasonal destinations, of which 11 scheduled, numerically better than Cyprus Airways.
What is incomprehensible is why the government should re-hire Cyprus Airways staff (unless they’re related to MPs and politicians), and worse still, why newcomer airlines should be forced by the government to hire from among the ex-CAIR pool. If the government succumbs and is foolish to allow this to happen, then the privatisations of Cyta, EAC, the ports and others are doomed to futility.
With Cyprus Airways out of the way, perhaps consumers will have better bargains to choose from, with service based on what they pay for. This may also be the beginning of a new era for consumers who will get better deals from all privatised entities. electricity and to feed their