Flying high? Garuda sacks pilot arrested for drug use

A plane belonging to Garuda Indonesia is seen on the tarmac of Terminal 3, SoekarnoÐHatta International Airport near Jakarta, Indonesia April 28, 2017.
PHOTO: Reuters

Indonesia flag carrier Garuda Indonesia and its low-cost subsidiary Citilink have fired a pilot found to have had a history of drug use.

Garuda Indonesia president director Irfan Setiaputra said the dismissal was meant to set an example for the airline’s employees, as the company had previously committed to a no-tolerance approach to such activities.

“Based on our investigation and coordination with the police regarding a pilot working for Garuda Indonesia and Citilink who was involved in drug abuse, the company has decided to sever all professional ties with the pilot,” Irfan said in a statement on Saturday.

The pilot was one of four people arrested in a drug raid by South Jakarta Police on July 6.

Irfan said the airline had held a drug and alcohol management program and had subjected more than 120 crew members and airport officers at Terminal 3 of Soekarno-Hatta International Airport to urine tests on Saturday to ensure the safety and security of its passengers.

He said the tests had not found any traces of narcotics in the airline’s employees.

“Garuda Indonesia Group has regularly conducted drug checks on its employees to prevent any form of drug abuse in the workplace, as well as to ensure the safety and convenience of its customers,” he added.