Numsa, Sacca welcome Labour Court ruling on 'unfair retrenchments' at SAA
Cape Town - The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) and the South African Cabin Crew Association (Sacca) have welcomed the Labour Court's ruling that the retrenchment process initiated by the South African Airways (SAA) business rescue practitioners (BRPs) was unfair.
In a judgment issued on Friday, the Labour court found that SAA and the BRPs' conduct in issuing a section 189(3) notice to consult was procedurally unfair; SAA and the BRPs were directed to withdraw the notices; and nothing in the order precludes SAA and the BRPs from offering, nor any employee of SAA from accepting, any offer of voluntary retrenchment, Numsa and Sacca said in a joint statement.
"We welcome the judgment. This basically means is that we have been vindicated. The court is re-affirming that the business rescue practitioners cannot retrench workers without a business rescue plan
"Furthermore, as Numsa and Sacca, we have exposed the true motives of the BRPs. We have said in our court papers that the proposal by the BRPs of a winding down of SAA, without even producing a draft business rescue plan, is nothing more than an extended gravy train for the BRP’s and their advisors," the statement said
The BRPs were appointed five months ago at great cost to the taxpayer they had "produced nothing". Numsa and Sacca were currently "doing the work which they have consistently failed to do", which was to devise a turnaround strategy for SAA.
The unions were working with the public enterprises department (DPE) on this, and urged the BRPs to join them. The strategy also included a plan to save SA Express, which was also facing liquidation, and workers there were suffering "because of the failure of another set of BRPs".
"We want to thank our members for having faith in us and for trusting us to always act in their interests. We remain committed to saving as many jobs as we can at SAA and we call for unity because there is still much to do in order to achieve this goal," the statement said.
African News Agency/ANA