File picture: Rogan Ward/Reuters
File picture: Rogan Ward/Reuters

Vote on SAA rescue plan fails to take off

By ANA Reporter Time of article published Jun 25, 2020

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Cape Town – A meeting where creditors of South African Airways were due to vote on the business rescue plan for the stricken airline was adjourned on Thursday at the behest of the majority of participants, particularly the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa).

The meeting has been postponed until July 14, said Louise Brugman, the spokeswoman for the business rescue team.

Brugman said 69 percent of those present at the meeting voted for it to be adjourned, following a request by Numsa, the South African Cabin Crew Association and the South African Airways' Pilots Association. 

Numsa maintains that the plan, tabled by Leslie Matuson and Siphiwe Dongwana, is not compliant with the Companies Act.

The pair was appointed as business rescue practitioners in December and have been under pressure not to wind down the airline, but to find a way of turning it into a viable business, despite the global downturn in the sector as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) this week urged participants at the meeting to vote in favour of the plan. For the plan to be adopted, 75 percent of the interest holders at the table have to vote in favour of it.

"The DPE believes a positive vote to finalise the business rescue process would be the most expeditious option for the national carrier to restructure its affairs, its business, debts and other liabilities, resulting in the emergence of a new viable, sustainable, competitive airline that provides integrated domestic, regional and international flight services," it said.

The department reacted sharply when SA Airlink said it would oppose the plan and questioned the company's motives. 

The Gauteng High Court refused to entertain an urgent application by the company to block the meeting.

African News Agency (ANA)

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