File Image: IOL

JOHANNESBURG - SA Airlink has on Monday, denied allegations that it would not be covered by an operating licence at the end of this month because it was allegedly "experiencing challenges" in its emergency application with the Domestic Air Services Licensing Council. 

This comes after media reports on Monday claimed that SA Airlink may be operating without a licence at the end of September. 

Business Day newspaper reported that "a top regional airline association has written to Transport Minister Joe Maswanganyi, urging him to act on the state if uncertainty stunting the leadership as well as the status of SA Airlink".

However, SA Airlink said that its licences to operate South African and international scheduled air transport services was valid and in place, and reassured the markets that its regular flights were operating normally. 

Chief executive and managing director, Rodger Foster, said the Business Day carried a "factually inaccurate" report.

Foster said that Airlink operates safe, reliable and efficient services within South Africa and also to destinations throughout the region, in strict compliance with all regulations and legal requirements.

"The false impression created by the article has raised unnecessary and unfounded concerns about Airlink’s status across the travel market, the air transport industry and allied sectors, including banks and underwriters," Foster said. 

"I give everyone my full and unequivocal assurance that it is business as usual at Airlink and that our air services licences are in place, as they should be." 

SA Airlink operates as a Regional Feeder Airline System which is a component of a large composite Network Airline Transportation System that includes the component systems of South African Airways and South African Express Airways.