/ 18 April 2023

Gordhan going rogue again, says NUMSA after SAA board appointments

Screenshot 2023 04 18 At 06.44.47
Pravin Gordhan 13/12/2015 – 2017

The appointment of a new South African Airways interim board, led by former tourism minister Derek Hanekom, has garnered stinging criticism from NUMSA – one of the country’s largest labour unions. 

On Monday, public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan announced the appointment of a “highly skilled and diverse” interim board of directors for the ailing airline. 

This is the eighth board to oversee the national carrier in 14 years. 

“This new interim board builds upon the foundations laid by the previous board and brings together an exceptional team of experts with experience across various fields,” the department said in a press statement.

But in a statement released before the official announcement of the new members, NUMSA said Gordhan had made the appointments unilaterally and “in secret”. It condemned the ANC and its leaders for allowing Gordhan to “run rogue”.  

“Gordhan never accounts to anyone, not even parliament or Scopa, or the governing party, which deployed him to that role,” said NUMSA secretary general Irvin Jim.

SAA entered business rescue in December 2019 after years of maladministration and corruption under the administration of former president Jacob Zuma. 

It exited business rescue in 2021, with the state relinquishing its majority stake to the Takatso Consortium, which will be acquiring 51%.  

The interim board, according to the statement from the department, will serve until Takatso is formally introduced as SAA’s strategic equity partner. The deal is presently undergoing regulatory review.

The other interim non-executive directors are Fathima Gany, Fundi Sithebe, Mahlubi Mazwi, advocate Johannes Weapond, professor John Lamola, Clarissa Appana and Dumisani Sangweni.