Takatso and SAA deal not at risk – DPE

The Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) says the deal that is expected to pave the way for the Takatso Consortium to acquire 51% of South African Airways (SAA) is not at risk.
The department condemned a distortion of facts since the resignation of Takatso Consortium now former board member, Gideon Novick.
“We condemn deliberate misinformation and casting of doubt of the transaction and regulatory processes since the resignation of Novick as a board member of the Takatso Consortium. The distortion of facts will not succeed in derailing the creative solutions to ensuring a positive future for the airline and its pilots and staff.
“The public should be aware of the efforts of competitors, detractors and other forces to undermine our efforts to save jobs and ensure a viable airline. The traveling public is being fleeced because of the shortage of seats,” the department said.
The department said the finalisation of the deal will be done once the regulatory processes are complete.
“The government reiterates its commitment to the on-boarding of the strategic equity partner for [SAA] and the growth of a competitive, sustainable and technologically agile airline. It will continue to regain its market share and offer the best service to its customers.
“The deal is not at risk,” the DPE said.
The department said it remains confident that the consortium will bring the required “technical, financial and operational expertise” to SAA.
From strength to strength
The department said the airline still has a critical role to play in the economy.
“The SAA team will do everything possible to ensure that SAA grows from strength to strength and provide much needed service to the travelling public given the shortage of capacity in South Africa.
“The current SAA operations and flights to various destinations is ensuring that the national airline continues to play a critical role in the aviation industry and economy at large by providing connectivity services for both passengers and cargo, facilitating trade and investment, tourism and promoting job creation,” the statement said.
According to the DPE, some 800 jobs have been created at the airline.
“DPE wants to thank the traveling public and loyal SAA customers for their continued support. Your support has helped to create 800 jobs for pilots, cabin crew and other workers.
“Their jobs are being endangered by the selfishness, reckless behaviour and greed of certain elements,” DPE said.

Source: South African Government News Agency