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‘From R1.8 bln to R113 mln’: SA Express’ assets value drops

SA Express is in provisional liquidation after an attempted business rescue failed.

FILE: An unreliable fixed assets register was just one of the problems the liquidators were having to deal with. Picture: SA Express.

CAPE TOWN - Liquidators of the state-owned airline SA Express told Parliament its assets, which were valued at R1.8 billion, were now worth no more than R113 million.

Aviwe Ndyamara briefed the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) on Wednesday. SA Express is in provisional liquidation after an attempted business rescue failed.

Ndyamara also told MPs that around seven parties had expressed an interest in either buying or investing in the embattled regional airline.

An unreliable fixed assets register was just one of the problems the liquidators were having to deal with.

“When we took office, the estimated assets were quantified at R1.8 billion. These past five weeks, in light of the COVID-19 regulations and various other challenges, we’ve reduced that [amount] to R113 million. So, there are significant differences,” Ndyamara said

That meant if SA Express’s assets were sold off now, that was all they would realise.

“So, if we were to dispose of the asset, what value are we talking? We’re sitting at R113 million. And we’re still reconciling – we do have challenges regarding the reconciliation in terms of what is on the books and records and what is physically there at SA Express,” he said.

Ndyamara said they were in uncharted territory. While he was involved in winding up bankrupt airlines before, this was the first time a state-owned carrier had ended up in liquidation.

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