State-owned airline SA Express has suspended its flights from Johannesburg to East London and Port Elizabeth, as well as from Cape Town to Durban.
This is according to an information contained in a trade notice on travel portal FlightSite.co.za. Additional information on the portal indicates that the suspension will come into effect on Saturday, October 15‚ 2016.
All passengers affected by the suspensions will be accommodated on Mango and SAA‚ the report added.
Most South African airlines have been in dire straits in recent time and cash-strapped SA Express is not excluded.
State-Owned Airlines In Dire Straits?
In May, the DA called for the country’s state-owned airlines to be privatized after the SA Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) suspended SA Express’s Air Operator Certificate (AOC) for failing to comply with the applicable civil aviation regulations.
The state-owned airline was suspended after the SACAA expressed dissatisfaction with the operator’s safety monitoring systems which were meant to monitor and address any safety deficiencies.
The regulator found that the operator’s proposed corrective action plan was inadequate as it did not satisfactorily address the findings raised. Throwing light on the suspension, SACAA said it was precautionary and taken in the interest of safety and preventing incidents that can be catastrophic.
The aviation authority added that the suspension was in terms of Part 185 of the Civil Aviation Regulations; which pertains to the operator’s AOC – N399D, S370D, I/N002, and I/S001.
Another state-owned airline, SAA, is caught in the web of disarray since 2015. Currently, the airline’s total guarantee totaled R19 billion. This comes after Treasury granted it a going-concern guarantee of R4.7 billion earlier this month.
On the other hand, SA Express has so far received R1.1 billion from state guarantee. From 2014-2015, it was able to fund its working capital and asset-based finance facilities after the state granted it additional guarantee.