Aviation CEO denies 'pirate-parts' claim

South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) CEO Captain Colin Jordaan has denied reports that the airline, Nationwide, had neglected to properly maintain its fleet.

In a statement issued on Monday, Jordaan rejected as incorrect media reports where he was quoted as saying: “Nationwide had neglected maintenance and its records were not kept properly. It had used pirate parts recycled from old aircraft.”

He denied allegations that Nationwide had used pirate parts or that it had recycled parts from old aircraft.

On November 30, the SACAA grounded Nationwide when it suspended its approval of the airline’s aircraft maintenance organisation and the certificates of airworthiness of Nationwide’s fleet of aircraft.

Last year Nationwide and SACAA also concluded a framework of compliance.

Instead Jordaan said that during an audit held shortly before the airline was grounded, the history of certain parts could not be verified.

“This is a far cry from proving that pirate parts were used or that old parts were recycled,” said SACAA spokesperson Phindiwe Gwebu.

Touching on the certificate of airworthiness, Jordaan said Nationwide’s aircraft was being re-certified one by one as and when they were found to be airworthy.

“To date eight of the aircraft in the fleet of 17 are flying again,” said Gwebu.—Sapa

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