Customers have been concerned after claims of safety issues with regards to South African Airways (SAA) aircrafts were raised by various unions involved in strike action. The airline has responded saying these claims are malicious and completely unfounded.
The South African Cabin Crew Association (SACCA), as well as the National Union of Metal Workers of South Africa (NUMSA) have been warning travelers not to fly with the airline in the midst of industrial actions brought about by the unions’ demands for an increase in pay.
These unions are claiming that whilst a strike is underway, learner pilots without experience will be flying planes and that this puts passengers at risk. The unions also raised concerns regarding inexperienced technicians.
While the strike continues, SAA announced yesterday, November 17, that it will restore five international flights including one headed for Brazil.
South African Airways (SAA) also announce its intention to resume flights to six destinations on the African continent, namely Accra, Lagos, Lusaka, Maputo, Windhoek and Harare, with effect from Tuesday, 19 November 2019.
— SAA – South Africa (@flysaa) November 17, 2019
“SAA calls on the South African Cabin Crew Association (SACCA) and the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) to retract the untruthful and unfounded allegations that flying the national carrier is in any way unsafe. SAA has a proven safety record and we have an unwavering commitment to safety. The safety and security of passengers and crew is the highest single priority to SAA. We do not compromise on that,” said SAA spokesperson, Mr Tlali Tlali.
Currently the airline and the unions have still been unable to reach an agreement while the unions are demanding an 8% salary increase, when SAA is offering only a 5.9% increase.