South African Express said it continues to make significant strides in its quest to turn around the airline to achieve long-term commercial sustainability. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG -  Embattled South African Express (SAX) on Friday said it continues to make significant strides in its quest to turn around the airline to achieve long-term commercial sustainability.

SAX said there have been instances in the recent past by competitors to stifle the local and regional growth of the airline by exploiting the challenges it faced in 2018 for their own interest, and to the detriment of the local and regional aviation market.

In May 2018, the South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) revoked the airline's operating permits, effectively grounding all its planes after an audit at the airline and its maintenance organisation uncovered severe cases of non-compliance that pose serious safety risks.

The airline last month said it was preparing to lay fraud and corruption charges against some of its former executives.

SAX chairperson, Tryphosa Ramano said the board "was excited" about the progress that the airline continues to make despite alleged concerted efforts by competitors and detractors to destabilise the airline. 


"They can all see the significant progress and recovery that the airline is making, which means stronger competition for those operators who stand to gain from its demise, while those entities which had irregular dealings with the airline are unhappy that their contracts are under review under SAX's new board and management," Ramano said.

Ramano also said all employees who were charged with various offences, and subsequently found guilty, have had their contracts of employment terminated.

In cases where these activities are related to alleged crimes, Ramano said criminal cases have been opened and the airline will be pursuing the legal route to recover any losses incurred due to these activities.

Meanwhile, SAX also allayed any fears that the airline was facing imminent liquidation as a result of court action that has been brought against it by one of its service providers.

African News Agency (ANA)