satawu thumb medium90 101Fin24 reports that the SA Transport and Allied Workers’ Union (Satawu) has slammed the "hands-off approach" of the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) regarding the business rescue of state-owned airline SA Express.  

Albeit at President Cyril Ramaphosa's behest, state-owned flag carrier SA Airways (SAA) went into voluntary business rescue in December 2019.  But, state-owned regional airline SA Express was forced into business rescue in February this year after a successful high court application by one of its creditors.  Satawu spokesperson Zanele Sabela said on Friday:  "We are wondering: where is the DPE?  Their silence is deafening.  Time is of the essence.  The opportunity to engage is now.  The DPE needs to say what its position is on SA Express.  The DPE must come to the party.  They must act."  According to Satawu, the DPE "did not bother" to appear in court during the business rescue application to support SA Express, despite having been named as one of the respondents in the application.  Satawu went on to observe:  "Of critical importance are the funds required to expedite the business rescue.  Whereas money was allocated to rescue SAA, no funds have been set aside in SA Express' instance, mainly because it (the business rescue) was involuntary.  The BRPs (business rescue practitioners) have already indicated to the DPE that R350 million will be required to save the airline.  But to date they have had no response."  According to Satawu, the BRPs have presented three rescue options for the DPE to choose from, the choice of which will then determine the BRPs' next move.

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