KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian low-cost carrier AirAsia on Thursday (Aug 29) urged the operator of Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) to upgrade its "inferior" operating system at the main terminals, after a network failure last week caused almost four days of flight disruptions.
The multi-day systems disruption, which started last Wednesday, resulted in dozens of flight delays and cancellations as well as long queues at check-in counters, as airport staff had to rely on manual operations.
Major functions such as Wi-Fi connections, the flight information display system, check-in counters and baggage-handling system were all affected
Operator Malaysia Airports Holdings (MAHB) identified network failure as the cause of the disruption.
"They (MAHB) asked us to use their system and we know that their system is inferior, but they forced us to use their system,” said AirAsia Group deputy chief executive officer of technology and digital Aireen Omar.
"This (recent glitch) shows that MAHB really needs to buck up and listen to their clients so that they can serve better."
Ms Aireen said the “old and very expensive” system should be upgraded immediately to enable airlines to provide better services to their passengers and the country as a whole.
AirAsia, Ms Aireen said, had previously recommended that MAHB consider using their system, which was less costly and “far more competent than the current ones used in all airports in Malaysia”. Their suggestion was rejected, she added.
Bernama reported on Wednesday that operations were back to normal. There were no more manual transactions over the counter and the main flight information display system was fully functional.
MAHB lodged a police report on Tuesday over the incident. CEO Raja Azmi Raja Nazuddin said in a statement that they did not rule out the possibility that it was caused by an act of malicious intent.
On Wednesday, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad called for MAHB to investigate the reason for the breakdown.