Gulf Air denies CEO resignation report
Manama, December 28, 2011
Gulf Air, the national airline of Bahrain, has denied reports that its chief executive Samer Majali has submitted his resignation.
It followed claims by MPs who yesterday demanded a Bahraini be appointed to replace Majali, from Jordan, amid rumours that he had handed in his notice.
The request was submitted to parliament chairman Khalifa Al Dhahrani by five MPs, who claimed the post would soon be vacated.
They want the issue included for discussion at next Tuesday's session.
The five are parliament public utilities and environment affairs committee chairman Hassan Al Dossary, committee vice-chairman Adnan Al Malky, and MPs Abdulhameed Al Meer, Abdulhaleem Murad and Dr Ali Ahmed.
"We have heard that Majali's resignation has been turned down, but it seems the post will be vacated sometime next year," said Al Meer.
"That post has never been occupied by a Bahraini except in rare and temporary cases and it is time that a qualified Bahraini leads the national airline. In other developed countries nationals tend to get those posts, but in Bahrain it is always expatriates.”
"The CEOs that have led this airline have never made it profitable and it is time for a change in direction for a possible turnaround,” he added.
However, a Gulf Air spokesman told our sister publication the Gulf Daily News that rumours of Majali's resignation were untrue.
“It has not happened yet. But the fact is that Gulf Air needs financial support from the state as a result of losses incurred during the year, due to the closure of several vital and profitable sectors,” Majali said.
“Unless financial support continues, and appropriate atmosphere provided for the recovery of destinations that the company was stopped from flying, then there will be no chance for me to continue in my position. It is regretful that matters have reached this stage,” he added. – TradeArabia News Service