Picture: Ian Waldie/Reuters

CAPE TOWN - South African Airways (SAA) may soon be placed under business rescue at the end of May, according to the Trade union Solidarity stating that their application filing will happen in May. 

Additionally, CEO Vuyani Jarana told BusinessLive that SAA needed to raise R21.7bn over the next three years to turn the company around and make it profitable. 

Presented to Parliament’s finance committee on Wednesday, SAA’s need the money to implement its turnaround plan. 

Jarana told BusinessLive that the R21.7bn would be comprised partly of a capital injection from the Treasury and partly of debt raised from commercial lenders and guaranteed by the government.

The size of the capital injection would depend on the government’s assessment of how much debt SAA is able to carry and was under consideration by an oversight committee chaired by Deputy Finance Minister Mondli Gungubele.

Due to a further R5 billion bailout, The High Court application which was supposed to be heard on Tuesday is now amending, said the union. 

The DA has called for a full disclosure on the status of funding for SAA and why parliament was possibly misled by the National Treasury, following a report in the media that SAA had again run out of cash and would receive a bailout of R5 billion - its third cash injection in just one year, DA spokesman Alf Lees said.

A briefing by South African Airways (SAA) to Parliament's finance committee was called off on Wednesday after MPs from the African National Congress (ANC) and the Democratic Alliance (DA) clashed on whether the meeting should be closed to the public.

Acting finance committee chairwoman Thandi Tobias stopped SAA executives from presenting its fourth-quarter results.

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- BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE