THE crisis unfolding at SAA affects us all, as travellers and citizens. For many of us who’ve enjoyed the privilege of flying with this world-class airline, it saddens us to see it reduced to ruins by its shareholders and the trade unions.
I worked in London for many years and SAA was always my airline of choice. I had nothing but a deep sense of admiration for SAA’s crew whose manners and professional standards matched and sometimes exceeded the world’s best.
The economics do not permit SAA to continue to exist in its current formation. This strike will hopefully hasten its demise which must happen because the government failed to sell it when it should have.
We’re tired of paying billions of rands to sustain a business that is officially bankrupt while poor people die of disease and poverty. Air travel is a middle-class adventure and the rich can travel on other airlines if SAA goes bust.
Propping up SAA is a vanity exercise that’s unsustainable in the long term. If the unions want to end its misery sooner, we welcome their help.
If I were the government, I’d let it sink with all its greedy unions and then start it from scratch later, with new contracts for those wishing to rejoin, and would pay them market rates instead of the looting rates they’re demanding. Those people trying to destroy what’s left of our airline should know we have no sympathy for them.