MH370 co-pilot was fully-certified to fly a Boeing 777: MAS Chief

KUALA LUMPUR - The co-pilot of the missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight MH370 was flying a Boeing 777 for the sixth time when the aircraft went missing, and was fully-certified to fly it.

"This is his (27-year-old Fariq Abdul Hamid) sixth flight and we did not see any problems with him. The sixth flight doesn't require a check co-pilot," said MAS chief executive officer Ahmad Jauhari Yahya.

"MAS is very strict with its training. For the first five flights, the co-pilot flies with a check co-pilot.

"As far as the co-pilot (Fariq) was concerned, he was new to the type, and had moved to the 777 fleet from a lower type. He was flying with an examiner, no less. The captain (Zaharie Ahmad Shah) is an examiner," said Ahmad Jauhari, at a press conference at the Putra World Trade Centre here on Tuesday, in response to a question if a lack of training on Fariq's part could have led to the disappearance of MH370.

It was reported a week ago that Ahmad Jauhari had said that the last radio transmission from the missing MH370 came from Fariq at 1.19am on March 8.

MH370, a Boeing 777 disappeared from Malaysian radars at 2.15am on March 8 after taking off from Kuala Lumpur International Airport for Beijing at 1.30am. It carried 239 passengers and crew.