SriLankan Airlines TU threatens strike action | Sunday Observer

SriLankan Airlines TU threatens strike action

5 March, 2017

The Nidahas Sevaka Samgamya (SLNSS) branch of SriLankan Airlines has said that they would resort to trade union action if they are not updated on the latest developments on the sale of the Airline and have asked for an opportunity to meet President Maithripala Sirisena.

President SLNSS, Janaka Wijayapathiratne told the Sunday Observer that they want this meeting with the President because conflicting messages are being given by Ministers as well as top decision makers of the Airline. He said that the Chairman of SriLankan Airlines says that he does not know anything about these developments and to ask the Government.

“There are over 7,000 employees of which nearly 5,000 are our union members. They are asking us regarding the sale of the Airline and we need to have to facts to answer them. Though this government said transparency would be maintained during the deal, it seems there are under-currents moving behind closed doors. We want to know the truth,” Wijayapathirana said.

He said that they had also wanted to meet the Prime Minister but this too had failed. “We have contacted the President through our mother Union Secretary, Leslie Devendra and if an appointment is not given to us before the end of March, we will launch a major strike.”

“The Colombo Airport is now closed during daytime and if trade union action takes place from April, the Colombo International Airport would be forced to shut down in the night as well.”

In March last year, was announced that Sri Lanka was looking for foreign investors interested in taking over the beleaguered, debt-laden national carrier. In July, the government began looking at offers for a 49% share and management control of the airline and three bidders, Peace Air, TPG and a Maldivian company were short listed.