SAA: There was no hijacking

Johannesburg -  Passengers on board South African Airways (SAA) flight SA346 from Cape Town were delayed on the tarmac at OR Tambo, after police boarded the plane to confirm an alleged hijacking attempt on Monday.

The Mail and Guardian reports, passengers on board the plane tweeted the situation during the tarmac delay.

A tweet from sedisemoseneke account raised the social media alert, "Just landed at OR Tambo, only to be told by captain they suspect our plane is hijacked! He must confirm his identity first!!”

Reports included police and fire engine escorts for the plane, before an announcement from the captain  informing passengers that police, Acsa (Airports Company South Africa), SAA and flight control were insisting on coming out to the plane in order to verify the captains identity and the alleged hijacking.

South African Airways spokesperson Tlali Tlali said,  “It seems that some of our stakeholders in aviation got information to the effect that our aircraft had been hijacked.”

"There was no hijacking," he said.

“You would know that for an aircraft to move from point to point there are a number of stakeholders involved: the airline, airline crew – both flight deck and cabin crew.

"It involves air-traffic control, and it involves a number of other role players. So we’re trying to find out where this particular message originated that the aircraft was hijacked, but we confirm there has been no hijacking incidents involving any of our aircraft today (Monday)," he said.

The Civil Aviation Authority is awaiting a report from SAA and will then proceed to investigate the matter further.
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