‘SAA-Takatso experienced immense political pressure’

Passengers board SAA plane.
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Takatso Aviation says it experienced immense political pressure in its attempt to acquire 51% of South African Airways (SAA).

The company says, however, that this was not the reason for the collapse of the deal.

Takatso Aviation Director, Tshepo Mahloele has told a media briefing in Cape Town that among the main reasons for the termination of the deal was the cumbersome divesture conditions imposed by the Competition Tribunal.

Mahloele says these included resolving issues with its minority shareholders.

“We do know and believe that even within the ruling party there has been different voices about this, but we really of the view that on the other side from the leadership of this transaction by Minister Gordhan that he had the support of the cabinet,” he adds.

Earlier, Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan also said the deal between SAA and Takatso Consortium was not ended because of political pressure.

He explained that the decision was made by mutual agreement and not due to any pressure from any quarter.

“This was not done under any pressure. Professionally, we came to the point that this is not the best way for SAA to be taken through and I don’t give into any political pressure.”

VIDEO: Aviation analyst, Guy Leitch on termination of deal SAA-Takatso deal:

-Additional reporting by Zalene Merrington