Like pilots at the beleaguered airline, Numsa and Sacca also believe the current board is of no value to the entity and has to be replaced.
South African Airways’ troubles appear to be mounting as the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) and South African Cabin Crew Association (Sacca) plan to join the proposed pilots’ strike aimed at forcing the dissolution of the SAA board.
Numsa and Sacca blamed the board of running the state entity into the ground. They claimed the board was incompetent and had led SAA to drown in R1.2 billion of debt.
The three groups demand the appointment of a CEO with experience in corporate turnaround strategy plans, as they had no confidence in the acting head, Zukisa Ramasia.
Viwe James, Numsa national infrastructure coordinator at SAA, said the union was embarking on the strike to call for the current board to be wiped out. James said the board was inactive in implementing turnaround strategies that would rescue the entity.
“We are in need of an accountable and competent leadership. The current one failed to implement turnaround strategies and come up with solutions to the entity’s financial crisis.”
Sacca’s deputy president, Christopher Shabangu, said the association also believed the current board was of no value to the entity.
“SAA currently has a vacuum leadership that cannot save it from the financial crisis. Those currently there are incompetent and cannot fulfil the entity’s needs.”
Sacca and Numsa said they had been calling for the SAA board to be scrapped.
“We have consistently made a call that the board must be reconstituted and represented by representatives of labour, business, and the government,” said the associations and union.
Sacca gave the parastatal almost three months to try and solve the raised issue or face strike action.
Financial constraints leading to low levels of revenue, long-standing debts and challenges with liquidity were some of the reasons behind the call for a turnaround strategy.
The pilots’ troubles intensified when former CEO Vuyani Jarana resigned in June following the board’s slow implementation of his turnaround plan – a plan the unions said was to save cash-strapped SAA.
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