The OUTA and SAAPA legal team wait in the Pretoria Palace of Justice for the missing Dudu Myeni. In front of them is 54 files of information backing up their application. Picture: Supplied

Former SAA board chairperson Dudu Myeni has failed to appear at the Pretoria High Court for a second day, instead sending attorney Daniel Mantsha to ask for a postponement of the case against her even though he indicated to the court that he was not officially representing her.

Outa and the SAA Pilots’ Association (SAAPA) are attempting to have Myeni declared a delinquent director, effectively clearing the way for her to be blocked from holding similar positions in any company. Should the application succeed, it could have serious implications for Myeni, who is currently listed as a director at 13 entities.

The application by Outa and SAAPA was launched in March 2017 after the organisation managed to halt a dodgy deal worth R256 million between SAA and BnP Capital in 2016. 

Myeni was due to appear before Judge Ronel Tolmay on Monday but notified Outa's legal team before the start of proceedings that she could not afford to make the journey from her Richards Bay home. She was warned to appear before the court on Tuesday or face the prospect of the hearing taking place without her.

Mantsha had previously been the attorney of record for Myeni, and there was some confusion about his assertion that he was there on her behalf even though she was no longer his client. 

Court was adjourned briefly for Mantsha to obtain clarity on his role from Myeni. 

“Mr Mantsha must either get instructions so that we can oppose his application for a postponement, or leave the building,” Outa’s Chief Legal Officer Advocate Stefanie Fick said during the break.
Mantsha subsequently informed the court that Myeni had found a pro bono advocate who would be available to appear on Thursday to make a formal application for a postponement.
When Judge Tolmay questioned why these arrangements hadn’t been made timeously, Mantsha said that Myeni had been trying to obtain resources to contest the case. He said that Myeni was still trying to secure and agreement from SAA’s directors’ insurance to foot the bill for her legal costs.

Tolmay again granted Myeni one day to find legal representation and file an application for postponement of the matter.