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Ramaphosa questions SAA route cancellations

From the end of this month, all domestic routes excluding Cape Town and Johannesburg will be cancelled indefinitely.

President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: @PresidencyZA/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG – President Cyril Ramaphosa has questioned the decision of South African Airways (SAA) business practitioners to cancel 11 local, regional and international flights.

The practitioners made the announcement on Thursday, saying it was in a bid to save costs.

This decision has been met with anger by labour unions, who say they weren’t consulted.

From the end of this month, all domestic routes excluding Cape Town and Johannesburg will be cancelled indefinitely, while SAA will operate only five routes internationally.

Ramaphosa said government did not agree with this decision.

“We want to find out what the rationale is, and we want to have a discussion with them because SAA is not only a great symbol for the country but it’s also an economic enabler."

He said government still saw the importance of having a state-owned airline.

“That is why we took the decision not to close SAA, but to ensure that SAA is revamped, resuscitated and it starts to operate profitably.”

The president said Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan would make an announcement on the recent developments at SAA.