tap airplane
Image: Armando Franca/ Lusa

TAP flight crew “satisfied with conclusions of IGF report”

Hope new CEO brings peace to troubled airline

TAP flight crew syndicate leader Ricardo Penarroias has given the government’s decision to dismiss the airline’s top brass a resounding thumbs-up.

The whole ‘golden handshake’ process was mishandled from the beginning, he tells reporters today – the bottom line being that it further degraded TAP’s image in the eye of a public that has been forced to bankroll the company since PS Socialists took over share capital in 2016, reinforcing the public interest even further in 2020.

“What is important to retain here is the whole lack of transparency of this process. All the trying to camouflage this process”, stressed Penarroias, president of SNPVAC. 

Last night’s dismissals on the back of the conclusions of the report by the IGF (general inspectorate of finances) were “another episode” in the last two hugely troubled years (…) shrouded in great controversy, he said.

The Alexandra Reis affair being simply ”another episode” where there has been lack of transparency.

He told reporters, in his opinion, Christine Ourmières-Widener and Manuel Beja should have assumed their mistakes and left voluntarily, rather than waiting as they did to be kicked out.

“By not assuming, in my opinion, they damaged the image of the company, because it was associated with a non-transparent situation, not very lucid. For us it’s not the question of the amount (…) The union’s board questioned several times how the compensation had been made, and nobody answered. The (parliamentary) inquiry was necessary to clear up this doubt”, he said.

For Ricardo Penarroias, the harm has already been done, the company’s image has been affected. Hopes now are pinned on Luís Rodrigues, the new TAP leader, to being “the social peace that has disappeared from the TAP group”.

But as Penarroias reiterates, ‘satisfaction’ is nonetheless tempered. After all this time, and in the wake of so many ‘scandals’, the nuts and bolts of the ‘TAP restructuring plan’ “which no one knows but has to be complied with” have still not been published.

Transparency, in the end, is still an issue.

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