Dudu Myeni: Claims that I stopped R1.5bn Emirates/SAA deal are baseless
Johannesburg - Former SAA board chairperson Dudu Myeni has dismissed allegations that she was instrumental in the cancellation of the new Emirates/SAA deal which was reportedly likely to give the national airliner an estimated profit of R1.5 billion.
Myeni made her denial during her maiden appearance in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Thursday to answer to the allegations that she botched the deal.
Myeni’s accusers - mostly former senior executives of SAA including acting CEO Nico Bezuidenhout - alleged that she phoned him and told him not to to sign the deal in Paris.
Evidence heard stated that Myeni said the instructions not to sign the deal came from former president Jacob Zuma.
In her reply, Myeni said: “I do not accept the allegations. It is baseless and it is not true. It is not true. The allegations are even prized into billions of rand. It is absolutely not true,” Myeni said.
According to her, her board had several concerns about the deal saying Emirates was a foreign airliner which enjoyed more flying frequency in South Africa than any other international airliner.
She said Emirates was not only flying to OR Tambo International Airport but also had frequent flights to Durban and Cape Town.
Myeni said Emirates frequent flights had affected SAA markets and the board wanted Emirates flights to be curtailed.
The trial continues.