Fedusa: Staff morale at SAA low

SAA CEO Vuyani Jarana says that Finance Minister Tito Mboweni's comments about closing the airline have created panic.

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

JOHANNESBURG – The Federation of Unions of South Africa (Fedusa) says staff morale is low at South African Airways (SAA) due to the political fights over the airline's future.

Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan on Monday visited the parastatal's staff at the Kempton Park offices where he told employees that the national carrier will not shut down and no jobs will be shed.

Just last week, Finance Minister Tito Mboweni told an investor conference in New York that there’s no need for the state to run an airline it cannot afford.

Fedusa's Dennis George says if Mboweni's comments materialise, it will cause a massive political implosion.

George says Gordhan has for the meantime managed to allay fears of job cuts at the airline.

He says Gordhan is planning to meet with the airline's pilots on Friday to give them an opportunity to raise any concerns with him directly.

SAA CEO Vuyani Jarana says Mboweni comments about closing the airline have created panic.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)