President Jacob Zuma unequivocally threw his support behind South African Airways (SAA) chairperson and personal friend Dudu Myeni on Tuesday.
The president said this while answering questions in parliament. Leader of the Democratic Alliance (DA) Mmusi Maimane asked Zuma if he had confidence in the controversial chairperson of the airline.
Zuma said in response that SAA’s problems did not start with Myeni, and that he didn’t know of any former chairperson of SAA who had outperformed her. She has been the executive chairperson of the Jacob G Zuma Foundation since September 2008.
“Yes! I have confidence in her,” said a giggling Zuma, who added that: “SAA has been in difficulty for a very long time. We’ve been trying in many way to fix the SAA. I have to hear who is the chair who was able to get the SAA out of trouble. I don’t see a difference in what she has done and what other chairs have done. Cabinet has confidence in all SAA board members.”
Government has reappointed Myeni as the chairperson of SAA despite calls by opposition parties not to reappoint her due to her alleged poor performance.
“We can’t listen to this criminal”
Meanwhile in parliament, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) walked out before Zuma could address the chamber.
They argued that Zuma was not fit to address parliament as he had broken his oath of office. The EFF walked out, saying they would return when the president was done talking.
“We are not prepared to listen to this criminal. We are going to leave this parliament and, when this criminal is done talking, we are going to come back,” said Malema.