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Crowe cautions Unions against giving into Aer Lingus management bullying

26 August, 2004

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Transport, Seán Crowe TD, today cautioned Aer Lingus trade unions against facilitating the destruction of the state airline. Deputy Crowe also accused Willie Walsh and other executives of putting personal ambition and enrichment before the interests of the Irish people.

The Dublin South West TD said, "While I understand that the primary concern of trade unions is the welfare of their members I would call on them to take in to consideration the wider implications of the proposals before them. I would caution the trade unions against been bullied or bribed in to facilitating the destruction of Aer Lingus.

"This is more than just about how much more profit can be squeezed from an already profitable airline. Aer Lingus is the national airline, which despite Willie Walsh's personal ambitions still belongs to the people of Ireland, and as such is a vital component in the transport infrastructure of this small island nation.

"It is becoming clearer that the real motivation behind the dramatic changes that are taking place at Aer Lingus is the positioning of the company for a management buy-out and the personal enrichment of its executives. It is not about securing the airlines future as a state owned company benefiting the people of Ireland.

"In aping Ryanair's Michael O'Leary, Aer Lingus management seem hell-bent on reducing what was and still just about is a proud company with a dedicated workforce to just another here today gone tomorrow low fair airline, devoid of any social, economic or strategic value to the people of Ireland." ENDS

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