Yesterday the Chairperson of the Board of the South African Airways (SAA) appeared before parliament to answer question about the airlines financial report. It appears that this state owned entity is very lucrative which has placed it at the centre of a great war between those who have been milking it for years and the newly appointed board.
Dudu Myeni who is the chairperson of the board has been trending on media as the DA accuses her of lack of leadership. The DA falsely claims that she is the reason the airline has been losing billions of rands. But is this true and was the airline ever profitable before Myeni?
SAA annual procurement budget is sitting at R24 billion but surprisingly almost all of it goes to white owned companies. Myeni expressed her concerns about the fact that only 2% of that is shared among black suppliers.
Myeni raised questions about the airline’s former chief executive Coleman Andrews earned more than R220-million during his 20-month stay at SAA.
The DA has argued that the airline previously made profit, citing year 2001 when Andrews reported a whopping R350 million. Myeni revealed shocking news that the R350 million profit was swelled by the fact that Andrews has sold aircrafts. One of the reasons Myeni has become so unpopular is because she wants to launch an investigation into the matter. It is alleged that after aircrafts were sold to an overseas company, SAA has had to lease them from the same company which contributes to losses.
SAA has never been profitable since Coleman Andrews left the airline as his legacy continues to haunt this SOE.
It is alleged that Treasury rejected the debt consolidation proposal Dudu Myeni presented which would have ended the financial woes of the SAA. It is not known yet as to why Treasury delayed issuing guarantees to SAA which has delayed issuing of the airline’s annual financial statement.
Myeni presented a plan to train black pilots but it did not get Treasury’s blessing which has since raised concerns about Finance Minister Pravin Gordhans role in the failure of SAA. Gordhan was against the appointment of Myeni as the chairperson of the board until parliament cornered him to come clean.
Myeni raised questions about pilots “ever green agreement” which is looting the airlines resources and has contributed to loses. This did not go well and 457 pilots out of 472 later casted a vote of no confidence on Myeni.