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Turnaround plans for SAA and Post Office taking shape

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa. Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa. [Image: www.dailymaverick.co.za]

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa says efforts to turn around the performance of the national carrier, South African Airways (SAA,) has begun to bear fruit. “The going concern status of the airline has been restored, costs have been reduced and operational efficiency is improving."

“We have confidence that the newly developed long term turnaround strategy will ensure that SAA continues to play a crucial role in facilitating commerce and tourism within our country and abroad,” said the Deputy President on Tuesday. He was speaking during the Presidency Budget Vote in Parliament.

In December, President Jacob Zuma assigned Deputy President Ramaphosa to oversee the turnaround of SAA, the Post Office and Eskom – three critical state-owned companies that are drivers of the economy.

SAA was also transferred from the Department of Public Enterprises to National Treasury.

“We are also encouraged by progress at the South African Post Office, where the strategic turnaround plan has been finalised for submission to Cabinet,” said the Deputy President.

He said the administrator appointed by Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services, Siyabonga Cwele, last year has undertaken a thorough diagnostic review of the challenges at the Post Office, and a business model that is better suited to the changing postal services environment has been developed.

With regards to Eskom, progress has been made in the implementation of government’s plan to stabilise the utility.

The Deputy President said Eskom will regain its strength in the country's economy.

“As the supplier of around 95% of the country’s electricity, Eskom is critical to our economic growth and sustainability. As we are all acutely aware, the company has been experiencing severe generation constraints, exacerbated by significant operational and financial challenges,” he said.

The Deputy President added that the Presidency welcomes the appointment of Eskom Acting Chief Executive Brian Molefe.

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