ST JOHN’S, Antigua – Petitions calling for the removal of the top brass at LIAT have gained hundreds of signatures. It follows a disastrous summer for the airline with numerous delays and cancellations affecting passengers region wide.
One petition named “HOLD LIAT Accountable” has over 415 signatories, while a Facebook group for the petition has over 1,500 members.
“(Five)-hour delay on the first flight of the day, 2.5 hours stay on a plane on the runway with no A/C, missed my UK connection, no booking on the flight the next day (which they said they would do) and no food or drinks provided,” commented Bob McKay.
Another petition calls on the prime ministers of three of the four shareholder governments – Freundel Stuart from Barbados, Baldwin Spencer from Antigua & Barbuda, and Dr Ralph Gonsalves from St Vincent & the Grenadines – to terminate the entire board and the top management within six months.
Further, the petition calls on the government leaders “to reduce and remove all airport, airline and passenger travel taxes fees and charges imposed by the shareholder governments, to set the example others may follow so that regional aviation may have yet another impediment removed from ease of movement among Caricom nations – as is publicly postulated as part of the regional political will.”
LIAT CEO Ian Brunton has defended high regional airport taxes. He said they are unavoidable because there is not enough traffic going through the regional airports to cover the cost of running them.
(More in today’s Daily OBSERVER)