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Treasury’s chief director says SAA lost billions during Myeni’s tenure

Avril Halstead is giving evidence in the case between the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse, the South African Airways Pilots' Association (SAAPA) and former SAA board chairperson Dudu Myeni.

FILE: Former SAA Chairperson Dudu Myeni. Picture: GCIS.

JOHANNESBURG - Treasury’s chief director has revealed how the government refused to provide guarantees to South African Airways (SAA) due to the airline’s inability to finalise financial statements on an ongoing basis.

Avril Halstead is giving evidence in the case between the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse, the South African Airways Pilots' Association (SAAPA) and former SAA board chairperson Dudu Myeni on Wednesday.

Outa and SAAPA want Myeni to be declared a delinquent director, accusing her of bringing the state entity to its knees.

They said during her tenure, SAA lost millions of rand as a result of her poor management style.

Halstead is testifying on SAA’s inability to meet its financial obligations, as well as state guarantees issued to the struggling airline.

Halstead said they were providing enough support to SAA to have it deemed solvent to lenders.

She said creditors were lending money to SAA on the basis that if it is unable to pay, the government would assist.

The court has previously heard how Myeni cancelled and changed deals at the last minute, costing the airliner billions.

Should Myeni be declared a delinquent director, she will not be able to serve as a senior executive for a period of seven years.