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Dudu Miyeni: When you're a leader you have to take the heat

The SAA board chair says she’s under attack because she’s driving a transformation agenda at the airline.

South African Airways plane. Picture: Facebook.

CAPE TOWN - South African Airways (SAA) Board Chairperson Dudu Miyeni says she's under attack because she's driving a transformation agenda at the embattled national airline.

Miyeni spoke to Eyewitness News after appearing before a joint meeting of Parliament's Finance and Public Enterprises Committees earlier today.

On Monday, SAA pilots cast a vote of no-confidence in the airline's leadership and management, amid concerns over a controversial R1.5 billion airbus deal and the departure of a top official.

SAA is set to post a loss of R648 million for the first six months of the current financial year and is asking National Treasury for a guarantee of R4 billion to R5 billion, which it needs in order to sign off its overdue financial statements as a growing concern.

Miyeni says she's being targeted because she wants a lot more than four percent of SAA's R24 billion procurement spend to go to 50 percent black-owned companies.

"Things were quite smooth, but all of a sudden, because we're focusing on transformation I'm attacked left right and centre. I'm probably paying a price for being black, or being a woman - I don't know."

Miyeni says she can take the pain.

"When you lead you have to take the heat, that's what I am doing and I am doing it for South Africa."

In seven days she is expected to give the finance committee her answer to the Democratic Alliance's question of when she will step down.

LISTEN: SAA pilots pass vote of no confidence in their bosses