PETALING JAYA: MCA has criticised Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu for complaining about his delayed Malaysia Airlines flight to London, adding that it was unfair towards the airline and its crew.
"Mat Sabu’s action was clearly childish and immature, turning a simple issue into an international laughing stock, and causing Malaysia a great deal of embarrassment.
"Besides that, what justifies the need for Mat Sabu to travel miles afar to UK to meet the Prime Minister? Current technologies are sufficiently advanced to cater most discussions, hence what was the issue of such paramount concern that it necessitates a face-to-face meeting?" its vice president Datuk Tan Teik Cheng said in a statement on Tuesday (June 25).
On Monday (June 24), the Defence Ministry had issued a statement on the incident, stating that the flight delay had made Mohamad miss an important meeting with Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who was in the UK on a working visit.
Tan questioned whether Mohamad had enquired with the airline on the reason behind the delay.
"Mindlessly blaming the aviation company is unfair towards MAS, especially its crew and other staff. Does Mat Sabu realise that MAS comes under the Transport Ministry Anthony Loke’s jurisdiction?
"If he does, why doesn’t he just contact Anthony Loke directly, instead of issuing a press statement 10 days after the incident to chastise MAS, thus openly humiliating them?" he said.
Tan added that Mohamad's statement looked like an "angry and frustrated vent" about the missed appointment with the Prime Minister which contained little constructiveness and looking out of place.
He also said the government's Cabinet members should communicate daily with each other, to encourage more mature ways of dealing with problems, so that it can avoid embarrassing predicaments in the future.
MAS has since apologised for the flight delay, claiming that it was due to a technical issue.
Mohamad had boarded flight MH002 from Kuala Lumpur on June 15 and was supposed to arrive in London at 5.55am the next day.
However, Mohamad only arrived at 8.26am, which caused him to miss his appointment with Dr Mahathir.