Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) and the South African Airways Pilots Association (SAAPA) has asked the court to declare South African Airways (SAA) chairperson Dudu Myeni a “delinquent director”.
The two organizations filed applications at the North Gauteng High Court on March 7 2017, which if granted, could see the SAA chairperson being denied the opportunity of being appointed as a director or executive of any organisation in South Africa for seven years.
OUTA portfolio director for transport Ben Theron at a press briefing at the Gordon Institute of Business Science on Wednesday confirmed this saying that Myeni’s appointment as SAA’s chair has cost the country a lot.
The airline had suffered a loss of R10.5bn over a period of five years, following Myeni’s appointment in 2012. The situation at SAA has worsened at the hands of Myeni, said Theron.
Among the reasons OUTA and SAAPA listed for Myeni being unfit to lead is the appointment of BnP Capital Services as a transactional adviser, despite this being unnecessary, he explained.
The request by Outa came follows a recently released report by the Democratic Alliance (DA) that says the state enterprise, SAA, spent a whopping R21 million on 16 investigations, all of which centred on allegations of fraud and corruption within SAA, but did not seem to have taken any action against those identified by the investigations
The DA, which had earlier questioned the reappointment of Ms Dudu Myeni as Chair of the SAA board, said all the investigations took place during the tenure of Ms Dudu Myeni as Chair of the SAA board,
“Ms Dudu Myeni presided over all these immensely expensive investigations but there is no information that any person employed by or associated with SAA has, as a result of the investigations, been criminally charged or even disciplined within SAA and fired,”said DA’s DA Shadow Deputy Minister of Finance, Alf Lees MP.
A report by EY in 2015 identified irregularities in procurement and contract management in which no action was taken, said Theron who added that the said failures occurred either at her own hands or under her watch.
Pilot and chairperson of SAAPA Jimmy Conroy echoed Theron’s view saying the SAA is in distress as a result of dysfunctional leadership.
He added by saying that the survival of carrier is in question, as a result of the “accumulation” of poor governance and political interference.