Malaysia

Tony Fernandes: No phantoms on AirAsia flights

KUALA LUMPUR, May 5 — Tan Sri Tony Fernandes officially dispelled allegations today that his budget airline AirAsia has been ferrying in foreigners to vote in today’s polls, saying on his Twitter page here that he had personally checked the manifests.

The AirAsia CEO explained that the carrier had four chartered flights carrying 478 passengers from Johor Baru to Kota Kinabalu but all were Malaysian citizens voting in Sabah.

Fernandes said AirAsia and AirAsia X had reduced fares and increased flights to allow more voters to return to their hometowns to vote. — File picFernandes said AirAsia and AirAsia X had reduced fares and increased flights to allow more voters to return to their hometowns to vote. — File pic“Every person who came on the flight was a malaysian mostly sabahans living in JB. MY STAFF said mostly families.

“From visible check as well all were malaysians. I repeat 478 all malaysians. NO Foreigners. No naturalised foreigners,” he wrote using the Twitter handle @tonyfernandes.

He said AirAsia and AirAsia X had reduced fares and increased flights to allow more voters to return to their hometowns to vote in what can best be described as a nail-biting race to the finish.

“No one has helped the democratic process more than us,” he said.

To a suggestion from Twitter user @esKahn that electoral reform group Bersih 2.0 and official representatives from Pakatan Rakyat (PR) be allowed to verify his claims, Fernandes said it would not be a problem.

“No issue at all. Ambiga can come herself,” he said, referring to Bersih 2.0 co-chairman Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan.

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