Argentina's pilot unions are acting according to party-political allegiances, the president of Aerolíneas Argentinas said Tuesday.
Luis Malvido took aim at pilots for reading a statement to passenger upon arrival at their destinations, describing the message as "political" and a "measure to favour Kirchnerism" electorally, in reference to the political movement led by vice-presidential candidate Cristina Fernández de Kirchner.
The former president is running on a ticket headed by her ex-Cabinet chief Alberto Fernández.
Aerolíneas will take action "so it does not repeat itself", Malvido told La Red radio.
The pilots actions are "breaking an internal rule and we have also received a consultation from the regulatory body ANAC asking us why they are doing this and what measures we will take".
Malvido pointed the finger of blame at Airline Pilot Association (APLA) chief Pablo Biró "whom we heard say his intention was to remove the government from power".
The message to passengers begins as a warning "about the situation facing Argentine pilots".
The Mauricio Macri administration's policies in the sector "have today resulted in companies which can no longer pay salaries" and "which have suspended their operations".
"Given the situation, which puts thousands of jobs at risk in the country, we ratify our commitment to continue defending Argentine aviation. The skies are also yours and we, of course, thank you for your understanding", it continues.
For his part, Biró told El Destape Radio, "the measure is part of a campaign to highlight the crisis facing the sector, which is leaving a trail of laid off workers. We decided not to continue to delay flights, and instead speak to passengers".
Malvido dismissed the claims, saying Aerolíneas for example "has more passengers every year. We have domestic flight levels 18 percent higher than they were in 2018. We are adding routes to connect the whole country".