A new Chief Executive
Office for the national flag carrier, Air Vanuatu, is expected to be appointed in March.
This has been confirmed by the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the airline, John Lum.
Lum says the Board would like the people to know that Air Vanuatu still does not have a new CEO and the holder of the position, Joseph Laloyer, is still on the job since his contract ended last year, until the Board appoints a new CEO.
“We have six applicants shortlisted for the position and one of them, a pilot, has been approved by the Board to return to flying for the airline,” the Chairman added.
He says the five other shortlisted applicants will be interviewed this week and the successful candidate announced by the Board in March.
Chairman Lum confirms that one of the five is incumbent CEO, Joseph Laloyer and that the others are also ni-Vanuatu, in line with government’s localization policy.
Since January there have been rumours that the Board and Shareholders of Air Vanuatu who represent the Government and the people of Vanuatu have been in disagreement over a suitable candidate for the CEO position.
With the board’s recent decision, it seems that the issue can now be settled with one of the strong contenders accepted to be re-employed as pilot for the airline.
The name of the pilot, Didier Virelala, has come up on several occasions, including on social media, over the past several weeks as the person appointed, only for the reports to be denied.
Virelava, a former Air Vanuatu pilot reached the level of First Officer on the ATR aircraft when his contract was terminated several years ago.
He later flew for Belair Airways private airline.
He is now employed as First Political Advisor of the Ministry of Education and Training.