CAA: It will take months before SA Express can fly again

The Civil Aviation Authority's director Poppy Khoza says flights will remain grounded until there's a guarantee on safety.

An SA Express plane. Picture: Facebook.com

JOHANNESBURG - The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) says its likely to take a few months before SA Express planes are allowed to leave the runway.

The authority on Thursday announced its decision to ground the airline because of an audit which flagged compliance issues.

At the heart of the regulator's concerns are problems with maintenance at the airline.

The CAA's director Poppy Khoza says flights will remain grounded until there's a guarantee on safety.

“We will have to redo the entire process like looking at a new airline; looking at the system to see if we are satisfied, then we can re-issue the operations certificate.”

Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan revealed yesterday that the embattled carrier paid over R5.7 million to the Gupta linked Trillian capital without following due process.

He says the grounding of the airline is the result of a consistent deterioration of it's performance over the years.

“That’s one of the consequences of the capture process that you have had recycling of board members, dubious contracts signed with no transparency.”

(Edited by Refilwe Pitjeng)