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Parly meeting to discuss SAA's financial results cancelled after parties clash

Wednesday’s meeting was originally scheduled to be closed to the public and the media, which is not the usual practice when the airline presents its quarterly financial reports.

FILE: JB Magwaza,  South African Airways board chairperson, appears before Parliament on 27 March 2018. Picture: Lindsay Dentlinger/EWN

CAPE TOWN - South African Airways (SAA) chief executive Vuyani Jarana and board chairperson JB Magwaza made a wasted trip to Cape Town on Wednesday, after a parliamentary meeting to discuss the airline’s latest financial results was summarily cancelled.

The airline was also meant to outline how it’s implementing a turnaround plan.

But the Democratic Alliance (DA) has clashed with the African National Congress (ANC) over whether the information was confidential and should be held behind closed doors.

Today’s meeting of Parliament’s Standing Committee on Finance was originally scheduled to be closed to the public and the media, which is not the usual practice when SAA presents its quarterly financial reports.

Permission was however granted by Parliament's House chairperson Cedric Frolick to close the meeting, but the DA says there was no agreement within the committee that such a request be made.

Acting chairperson of the committee Thandi Tobias says that until the details of its previous meeting can be retrieved from the Hansard, it won’t proceed.

“There’s no basis for this meeting because the meeting itself is disputed. It’s on those basis that I call this meeting off. If it's found that you did not agree, the meeting will have to be open,” she said.

Tobias allowed the SAA delegation to leave the room without uttering a word and ordered MPs to return all information handed to them.

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