Gigaba appoints new SAA chairperson

Minister Malusi Gigaba appointed Duduzile Myeni on Friday to lead the South African Airways board.

Minister Malusi Gigaba appointed Duduzile Myeni on Friday to lead the South African Airways board. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

JOHANNESBURG - Minister of Public Enterprises Malusi Gigaba has appointed Duduzile Myeni as the acting chairperson of the South African Airways (SAA) board.

Vuyisile Kona was appointed as the airline's CEO.

The appointments come after a spate of resignations in the embattled airline.

In October, six board members and chairperson Cheryl Carolus left the company, allegedly because of a communication breakdown between the board and Gigaba.

Two more managers, Commercial general manager Theunis Potgieter and head of Legal and Risk Sandra Coetzee, also tendered their resignations in October.

These resignations followed that of CEO Siza Mzimela, who also handed in her notice to leave in October.

Speaking to Talk Radio 702/567 Cape Talk's Bruce Whitfield, DA Shadow Minister of Public Enterprises Natasha Michael says the recent appointments are a worrying move.

"It is worrying that SAA is in a worrying crisis state and it could really do with someone with extensive aviation and financial experience."

Michael said Myeni's career background was also a cause for concern.

"I think it is a very worrying move that yet again it seems a friend of the president has been placed in a very high and prominent position in South Africa.

"[Myeni]'s had the Special Investigating Unit looking into alleged maladministration, misuse of state resources and unfair dismissals [against her]."

The DA minister said the country deserved a better airline.

"But when [Gigaba] makes an appointment like this and we get no explanation then we find it concerning. But let us watch this space."

The ailing airline was also granted a R5billion bailout from government in October.

To listen to the DA Shadow Minister of Public Enterprises Natasha Michael interview click here