Thursday, April 14, 2016

Malaysia's first Sharia-compliant airline suspended: official

Okay, when I first read the title of this blogpost over at DAWN, a number of reasons for the suspension popped into my head so let me share those initial thoughts with you:

  • The airlines was shut down because all pilots had their hands chopped off due to trying to steal extra bags of pretzels
  • While a flight attendant was being stoned to death during the beverage service, an errant rock went through one of the windows
  • Customers complained that it took them three hours on a flight to get a cup of coffee because the flight attendant couldn't walk down the aisle with out two male members of her family
Anyway, I got a chuckle.

Malaysia's first Sharia-compliant airline suspended: official

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's first Islamic-compliant airline has been suspended for three months after it failed to adhere to aviation regulations, a senior official said Monday, as the government announced a safety audit of the carrier.

“Rayani Air has been suspended for three months,” Azharuddin Abdul Rahman, director-general of the Department of Civil Aviation, told AFP.

“They contravened civil aviation regulations,” he said, declining to elaborate.

Muslim flight crew don the hijab while non-Muslim crew are forbidden from wearing revealing clothing on board the airline, which launched last December.

Related: Malaysia's new Islamic airline takes off, with a prayer

In-flight meals are completely halal and alcohol consumption is strictly banned. In recent weeks, however, the carrier had drawn increasing criticism from passengers and the government due to last-minute delays and cancellations.

Pilots of the carrier, which operates two Boeing 737-400s, had gone on strike, further damaging its image.

Rayani Air said Monday in a Facebook post that it was working hard to “to solve our internal matters and get Rayani back on track”.

Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai tweeted on Saturday that the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) would conduct a safety audit before allowing the airline to fly again.

“DCA will undertake a full administration and safety audit to determine if Rayani is 'fit' for AOC (aviation operating certificate) after serving provisional suspension,” he wrote.

Liow also expressed disappointment at Rayani's conduct despite previous warnings over “poor procedures and service level”.

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