Unions urged to accept offer after DPE agree to pay outstanding salaries to SAA employees

Picture: Neil McCartney

The SAA employees has been given until Thursday, 17 December 2020, to accept the department’s full and final settlement offer.

After Finance Minister Tito Mboweni announced a R10.5 billion bailout for SAA in October, the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) has confirmed that it will pay three months outstanding salaries for June, July and August to South African Airways (SAA) employees.

The SAA employees – who have not been paid for eight months as the airline has been in business rescue since December 2019 – has been given until Thursday, 17 December 2020, to accept the department’s full and final settlement offer.

The department also announced that it the employees will be back paid a 5.9-percent increase that will be paid as a lump sum and a 13th cheque, which will be paid to all employees excluding for pilots.

READ MORE: Is there still some hope for SAA?

“We hope that the above offer will be received positively, we need to continue to work together in restructuring the airline into a more viable and sustainable entity.

“We are mindful of the other matters highlighted by the unions, which are being referred to the now appoint interm board, whose mandate includes concluding this period of business rescue.”

The department further urged unions to accept on the offer “to enable payment soonest, and to enable the process of restructuring to commence, under the stewardship of the board”.

ALSO READ: ‘SAA failing would take tourism industry down with it’

Earlier this month, the Department announced former Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) chief executive Geoffrey Qhena as the chairperson of the SAA interim board.

The appointment of the directors came after Deputy President David Mabuza revealed that a new SAA board would be appointed in a “few weeks” in late November.

Qhena is among six non-executive directors of the SAA board amid government’s plans to restructure the airline. The other directors include Peter Tshisevhe, June Crawford, Bembe Zwane, Professor Edna van Harte and Nick Fadugba.

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