Garuda Indonesia has withdrawn its logo from all aircraft operated by Sriwijaya Air on Wednesday, in a heightened dispute over changes in the latter's board of directors, and amid threats of a premature end to their partnership. (JG Photo/Afriadi Hikmal)
Garuda Withdraws Logo From Sriwijaya Flights, Partnership in Limbo
BY :THRESA SANDRA DESFIKA & HERU ANDRIYANTO
SEPTEMBER 25, 2019
Jakarta. National flag carrier Garuda Indonesia has withdrawn its logo from all aircraft operated by private airline Sriwijaya Air on Wednesday, in a heightened dispute over changes in the latter's board of directors, and amid threats of a premature end to their partnership.
Garuda Indonesia spokesman M. Ikhsan Rosan said the decision to withdraw the logo from Sriwijaya Air was meant to protect the national carrier's reputation. He also accused Sriwijaya Air of failing to maintain Garuda's service standard.
"We need to say that the decision to withdraw the Garuda Indonesia logo was made to ensure that our logo continues to represent safety and good service during flights," Ikhsan said.
He added that the current developments were regrettable, but that the decision was made after careful consideration.
"Work to remove the Garuda Indonesia logo from Sriwijaya Air's fleet is underway," he said.
Earlier this month, Sriwijaya Air abruptly dismissed president director Joseph Adrian Saul, human capital and service director Harkandri M Dahler and commercial director Joseph K. Tendean in a move that sparked outrage among Garuda's top executives.
All three were executives at Garuda prior to joining Sriwijaya Air.
Sriwijaya shareholders have appointed Anthony Raimond Tampubolon as acting president director.
Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi said earlier on Tuesday that the government could not intervene in the dispute, but warned that it should not disrupt services to their customers.
"We have summoned them and met with them. Basically, it is a business-to-business issue, we cannot intervene further," Budi said.
"We hope the two companies will act carefully because their businesses involve public services. Each can play a role to settle this, and hopefully Garuda and Sriwijaya will find a solution," he added.
Garuda, through its subsidiary Citilink, took over the management of Sriwijaya and NAM Air on Nov. 9 last year under a joint operating agreement. Garuda saw the agreement as a strategic move to increase its share of the country's civil aviation market to 51 percent.