JOHANNESBURG – Former South African Airways (SAA) board chairperson Cheryl Carolus said that Malusi Gigaba left the local airline in a shocking state of paralysis when he was moved from the Public Enterprises ministry.
On Thursday, Carolus, testified at the state capture commission, accusing Gigaba of misrepresenting facts and made utterances that questioned the competence of local airline’s board.
She told the Zondo Commission that the former minister once allowed people not within government to place pressure on the local airline, in effects of dropping its route to Mumbai.
“The minister was at best negligent and at worst, in fact, hostile. It was shocking where SAA ended under Mr Gigaba.”
She even suggested that Gigaba wanted the SAA board to do things to favour that were favourable to the Gupta family.
“I think he would have wanted us to sign off on things like the Jet Airways and The New Age things.”
She continued to drop bombshell’s saying Gigaba was deliberately sabotaging state-owned enterprises.
Carolus called on people who can assist the commission with evidence and ignore the attacks that have recently besieged the commission.
She added the commission is vital, “I must say I was appalled by the vitriol levelled at some of the people who did appear here such as Minister [Pravin] Gordhan in particular, but perhaps even more frightening was the level of vitriol against the commission itself.”
On the airline’s route to Mumbai, India, Carlous said it was important for vital to connect global trade flows.
“The Mumbai route was particularly important for us in that expansion in what we call the east-west corridor. Bringing passengers from Beijing and Mumbai were our key markets, where South Africa was growing its own trade and those same people we were trading with were also trading into Africa.
“It was a very important one for us to connect major global flows of trade through Johannesburg as a hub. That was significant for us at the time of building up the Mumbai route.”
Photo credit- EWN