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Ron Derby | Our problems are so much bigger than SAA, the focus on it just fans the flames

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Ron Derby
Ron Derby

While the government flounders in its attempts to build an impenetrable case for the strategic importance of its continued ownership of national airline SAA, there are other companies in its bloated portfolio of state-owned enterprises where it isn't such a hard sell.

One such case is the Passenger Rail Agency of SA (Prasa), a transport agency that services the lowest income households in the country. It's an area where it would prove difficult to attract private sector investment without compromising the most vulnerable segments of society with a rise in their travel costs. 

The case for state continuing to supporting passenger rail is virtually one cast in stone, and yet today, Prasa is collapsing right before our very eyes. For a myriad reasons, namely a transport department with little to no credibility along with the fact that it's the main carrier of workers in unskilled sectors such as the construction sector or domestic employees, it doesn't warrant the attention of the national airline.

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