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Does SAA know extent of theft, fraud?

MPs wanted to know if there’d been consequences for theft & fraud made possible by weak security and stock-control systems. SAA board chairperson says they are still receiving tip-offs about wrongdoing.

FILE: A South African Airways flight takes off as another one is parked in a bay on the tarmac at OR Tambo International airport in Johannesburg. Picture: AFP

CAPE TOWN – Parliament's Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) has been told that record-keeping at the South African Airways (SAA) has been so poor that the extent of theft that may have taken place has yet to be quantified.

Auditor General Kimi Makwetu flagged poor internal controls and a lack of proper systems when he gave both SAA and Mango qualified audit opinions in a damning report tabled in Parliament last month.

SAA board chairperson JB Magwaza on Tuesday told Scopa the board is seriously concerned.

Members of Parliament (MPs) wanted to know if there’d been consequences for theft and fraud made possible by weak security and stock-control systems.

Magwaza says the SAA board is still receiving anonymous tip-offs about wrongdoing.

He says he’s put together a “forensic group” of board members to investigate.

“Because there’s a serious level of concern that we don’t have the full picture here... I must state that even now we do receive anonymous SMSes and emails to this effect, and there’s just no way we that we can just sit and do nothing about this. We want to get to the bottom of this thing.”

Magwaza says they’ll only have a proper idea of the extent of theft at SAA once the group’s work is done.

CEO Vuyani Jarana says SAA’s embarked on physical stock take and a new control system is being put in place.

Jarana says as things stand, it’s not possible to say stock has been stolen from SAA.

(Edited by Winnie Theletsane)