SAA board members resign

SAA board members resign SAA board members resign

Five non-executive members of the South African Airways board have resigned as the result of seven members in opposition to Chairwoman Dudu Myeni’s leadership having received notice of a board meeting scheduled for Thursday 23 October. At this meeting, they would have to make representations on their continued service to the Board, to the Minister of Public Enterprises Lynne Brown before she decided on their fate.

Myeni is also chairwoman of the Jcob Zuma Foundation.

SAA is currently making losses of R300 million a year on commercially unsustainable routings such as the one to Beijing. Several unprofitable routes were discontinued but the Beijing route was labelled as to politically important to be discontinued.

The notice for the meeting was issued by Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown on 19 October and among the items on the agenda was the removal of non-executive members of the board. It said she was acting in her formal capacity as the designated representative of the sole shareholder of the airline, the South African government.

Subsequently, four non-executive directors submitted their formal resignations to Brown by Friday morning.

“It is a pity that some board members have chosen this path. The meeting is intended to give them the opportunity to respond on the record,” Brown said.

“I am limiting my comments on the matter of board membership to that at the moment in the interest of fairness to those who do choose to attend the meeting.”

She said in general that she and the minister of finance (Nhlanhla Nene) were leading an inter-ministerial task team, which included directors general, focusing on the future of the airline. “SAA has been making losses over a number of years and any intervention arising from our work will be aimed at getting the company to live off its balance sheet as soon as possible,” she said. The department said, by 2pm on Friday, no other resignations had been received although it is believed that a fifth member resigned the following day.

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