TMG Digital on Business Day Live
THE Democratic Alliance is going to ask Minister of Public Enterprises Lynne Brown to investigate allegations that South African Airways chairwoman Dudu Myeni proposed an unprofitable route to the Sudanese capital Khartoum "to please President Jacob Zuma and his close ally and Sudanese President‚ Omar al-Bashir".
The proposal reportedly played a role in the sacking of Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene.
The DA also wants Brown to investigate Ms Myeni’s performance since her appointment as chief of SAA.
"Pending the conclusion of these investigations‚ Ms Myeni should be removed from her position. Added to this‚ the Minister should thoroughly probe all the airlines’ routes to ensure that only profitable ones remain‚" said DA spokesperson on public enterprises Natasha Mazzone.
Ms Mazzone asserted that flying to Khartoum would have cost the already cash-strapped airline R30 million in its first two years of operation and that the proposal was an "apparent show of respect and support by President Zuma for the wanted fugitive‚ President Omar al-Bashir".
Mr Al-Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for war crimes. During a visit to South Africa last year‚ the High Court in Pretoria ordered his arrest. However‚ the government defied the order and allowed him to leave the country.
"To the country’s relief and despite Mr Zuma’s nod‚ SAA’s Executive Committee‚ the Group Executive Committee and Finance Minister at the time‚ Minister Nene‚ did not approve the plan for this new route. This was the first step towards the ever-prudent Mr Nene’s axing. When he defied Ms Myeni’s further demand to restructure the Airbus deal it seems the writing was on the wall for Mr Nene’s removal‚" Ms Mazzone charged.