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By Staff Reporter : PNG Today

No Vanuatu pilots contract terminated

The Air Vanuatu Board of Directors (BOD) has taken the decision to give a three months extension period to ni-Vanuatu pilots who have yet to get their Airline Transport Pilot Licenses (APTL).

“No Ni-Vanuatu pilots have been terminated,” BOD Chairman John Lum told BuzzFM 96’s Kizzy Kalsakau for the Nightly News (NN).

“The Air Vanuatu BOD has taken the decision to give them another three months, they will be on full salary during this period.

“The Board is committed to assisting local pilots who are holders of Commercial Pilot Licenses (CPL) advance to APTL.”

Lum made the remarks after Prime Minister Charlot Salwai’s instruction to Air Vanuatu not to terminate Ni-Van pilots and asked the BOD to review the airline’s current policy requiring all ni-Vanuatu pilots to have an APTL.

Asked how the Board has encouraged the pilots to get their APTL and how many there are, he said the issue of pilots in Air Vanuatu is a longstanding issue.

“We encouraged our local pilots to fly,” he said.

“However, the issue now is some of them returned from studies only with commercial licenses.

“There are many pilots who have APTL and are currently flying. In our domestic fleet. We have more than 10 pilots and Boeing –two and Twin Otter-4 and a few who have yet to catch up with their APTL as they are still using commercial licenses.

“Getting an APTL is very important because it adheres to Civil Aviation regulations and is imperative for the safety of passengers.”

He explained that these pilots have been with Air Vanuatu for over three years. “In July 2015, the management of Air Vanuatu issued letters giving them 12 months to get their APTL,” he said. “It will be one month from the date the letters were issued soon.

“One of these pilots has committed himself to acquiring his APTL but two or three others could not.

“Thus their issues were raised following the instructions by the management, they do not this.”

The BOD Chairman also said there are some pilots in the country who are holders of APTL but currently work as bus drivers, security personnel and some who work in the ministry who need to advance to another level, saying, “When those above do not pursue their APTLs, it affects those who have APTLs and need to advance.”

Lum mentioned Air Vanuatu can assist the pilots in terms of tickets abroad to get their APTL. They also have the alternative to do this in Vanuatu.

“A pilot’s license is their own license, not Air Vanuatu’s,” he said.

“Air Vanuatu will assist them but it is their commitment. At the end of the day, it is their qualification. Once they get their APTL, they will be able to fly in other Pacific countries such as Solomon Islands, PNG and even Australia.”.


Posted by Staff Reporter : PNG Today on 8:05 PM. Filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Share this Article


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