The country’s national air carrier, South African Airways (SAA) has halted all operations with immediate effect. They will be placed under ‘care and maintenance’ as the business rescue practitioners and government continue discussions for much-needed funding.

“The BRPs (administrators) have made a decision to suspend all the airline operations with immediate effect and are pursuing a process to put the airline under care and maintenance until funding discussions are completed,” the administrators announced in a notice on Tuesday [September 29].

SAA will complete the remaining cargo and repatriation flights on their schedule, but will not schedule any new flights, reports News24.

Business Maverick said this suspension will also affect SAA subsidiaries like Mango Airlines, SAA Technical, Air Chefs and SAA Cargo.

This decision has been one long in the making. SAA were put under bankruptcy protection in December 2019 after mass financial loss over the last decade, made even worse by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In June, business rescue practitioners published their restructuring plan which revealed the airline would require over R10-billion to get back up and running. The government has failed to provide the necessary funding, forcing the airline to ground.

There may still be hope for the embattled airline, as some banks have shown a willingness to fund a portion of the money needed to implement the business rescue plan. Negotiations with the government will also continue.

Picture: Facebook / Fly SAA

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