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Unions warn of thousands of job losses should SAA collapse

The national carrier last month received R3.5 million in emergency funding from the Development Bank of Southern Africa and entered a form of bankruptcy protection in December.

Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG – The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) and the South African Cabin Crew Association (Sacca) on Monday said they wanted a viable South African Airways (SAA), and not one that depended on bailouts.

The national carrier last month received R3.5 million in emergency funding from the Development Bank of Southern Africa and entered a form of bankruptcy protection in December.

Unions called on business rescue practitioners to speed up the process of cancelling, renegotiating or insourcing contracts, which they said were a financial burden.

“But if SAA collapses, 10,000 workers and their families will suffer because of job losses, and we know that on average, workers support between five and seven extended family members, which means up to 70,000 people may be affected,” said Numsa and Sacca in a joint statement.

Several flights were recently cancelled due to cash shortages.