SAA pilots, Outa look to nail SAA chairperson

2017-03-08 15:41

The SAA Pilots Association, together with the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse, have filed court papers as part of a campaign to declare SAA chairperson Duduzile Myeni a delinquent director.

Myeni is also chairperson of the President Jacob Zuma’s foundation and chairperson of the Mhlathuze Water Authority Board. She was appointed acting SAA chairperson in September 2012, following the resignation by former SAA chairperson Cheryl Carolus and eight other members, before becoming SAA chairperson in June 2013.

The pilots association, which represents 737 out of 740 SAA pilots, and Outa today launched their campaign at a media event held at Gordhan Institute of Business Science in Sandton after having filed 63 pages of court papers on Tuesday in the Gauteng North High Court in Pretoria.

Outa chairperson Wayne Duvenage said the case against Myeni was “precedent setting”.

The four parties that the pilots association and Outa cited in their court papers as defendants were Myeni, SAA, state-owned company Air Chefs and Finance Minster Pravin Gordhan.

Ben Theron, Outa portfolio director of transport, said that SAA had lost R10.6 billion over a five-year period despite being profitable between 2010 and 2012, prior to Myeni’s arrival.

The losses were “not only due to incompetence or negligence – compounded by misconduct by the board including and led by Ms Myeni”, Theron alleged.

Theron said that Outa had instituted the legal action against Myeni based on six counts:

» The alleged illegal appointment of financial services provider BnP Capital as transaction adviser;

» Allegedly illegally extending BnP Capital’s mandate to include source of funds;

» Allegedly attempting to pay a cancellation fee of R49.9 million to BnP Capital;

» Allegedly illegally interfering with the board-approved Emirates deal;

» Allegedly misrepresenting the board by informing Gordhan that the board approved two Airbus aircraft and not 10; and

» Allegedly ignoring the findings of the Ernst & Young report despite damning findings requiring urgent action.

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March 18 2018