Dudu Myeni loses court bid to expunge damning plea explanation
Pretoria - Former SAA board chairperson Dudu Myeni has lost her bid to expunge a plea explanation she made in June 2017 in which she admitted that the national airliner appointed BNP Capital despite it not having financial services provider licence.
Judge Ronel Tolmay of the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria ruled on Monday that Myeni has failed to give a reasonable explanation for her application to expunge the plea.
Judge Tolmay said her application “cannot be granted.”
The judge also dismissed her application to have other directors of the board added to the case against her.
Reacting after the judgment, Outa head of legal Stefanie Fick said they were delighted and were now preparing themselves for the main duel in January 2020.
Outa and SAAPA wants Myeni to be declared a delinquent director.
In their court papers, the two parties argue that the SAA board’s appointment of BnP Capital in April 2016 as a transaction advisor to SAA was unlawful.
- They further argue that the board’s extension in May 2016 of the BnP Capital contract to include sourcing funding of R15 billion for SAA was unlawful and that BnP had by then lost its financial services provider licence.
- They also argue that the board’s decision in July 2016 to create and pay to BnP a cancellation fee of R49.9m for the failed contract was irregular and unlawful.
- That in June 2015, Myeni unlawfully intervened in a board-approved deal between SAA and Emirates airline to block it, claiming that then President Jacob Zuma had reservations about the deal and resulting in significant financial losses and reputational harm for SAA.
- That in 2013, Myeni unlawfully interfered in the financing for SAA’s contract to buy 20 new Airbus A320-200 aircraft for SAA, apparently to gain a financial advantage for another party. Then in September 2015, Myeni unlawfully intervened to block an SAA agreement with Airbus to cancel the purchase of the remaining 10 aircraft in favour of leasing five aircraft.
- They argue that Myeni’s action was intended to improperly involve and benefit a new aircraft leasing company and would cause unnecessary costs to SAA.
- That when Ernst & Young reported to the board in December 2015 on significant problems with SAA procurement and contract management, Myeni and the board ignored the report and took no action to safeguard SAA’s interests and assets.