SAA begins retrenchment process

Posted by Elise Kirsten on 10 March 2020

South African Airways’ business rescue practitioners (BRP) have issued a notice informing the airline’s employees that it intends to start consultations in terms of Section 189 of the Labour Relations Act.

All 4,708 SAA employees will be affected and the notice was issued to all recognised employee unions for SAA, which include the South African Airways Pilots Association, SACCA – South African Cabin Crew Association, SATAWU – South African Transport and Allied Workers Union, Solidarity, AUSA – Aviation Union of South Africa the National Transport Movement, NTM Management Forum, and NUMSA – National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa.

SAA Technical, Mango and Airchefs are not affected by this notice.

‘Significant changes to conditions of employment, including remuneration and benefits, appear unavoidable and will be sought by agreement,’ the BRPs notice stated.

‘The success of the proposed restructuring cannot be successfully implemented without the agreement of the collective bargaining representatives of the employees (the Unions) as well as on the availability of funding to support the plan. The scope of the contemplated organisational restructure encompasses SAA airline in its entirety.’

‘Regrettably, this restructuring exercise, if implemented, may lead to positions being declared redundant across various job categories and in significant numbers. This may, in turn, result in the dismissal of employees employed by the Company, for operational reasons,’ the administrators said.

‘Our intention has always been to preserve as many jobs as possible through this process while still focusing on having a sustainable airline and platform for growth,’ the BRP said. The administrators also emphasised that no final decisions with regard to retrenchments have been taken and that these won’t be made ‘until we have exhausted consultation and hopefully reached agreement,’ said the administrators.



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