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South African Airways to resume flights to Nigeria Tuesday

South African Airways will resume flights to Nigeria, Ghana, Zambia, Mozambique, Namibia and Zimbabwe on Tuesday after the shut down of its operations due to industrial dispute with its workers.

SAA announcing its intention, said it will resume ‘flights to six destinations on the African continent, namely Accra, Lagos, Lusaka, Maputo, Windhoek and Harare, with effect from Tuesday, 19 November 2019.’

The airline said the resumption of flights is in ‘addition to all SAA’s international flights, which are now fully operational.

“We are pleased that SAA is now able to increase services and to offer our customers more flights on the African continent, and that all our international flights are back on schedule. It is also important to assure SAA’s customers that our operations are safe and that the airline will never compromise on this core responsibility,” said Philip Saunders, SAA’s Chief Commercial Officer.

SAA said passengers booked to travel on its international services will now be able to travel as booked.

“Customers travelling on SAA’s regional network to Accra, Lagos, Lusaka, Maputo, Windhoek and Harare will be rebooked on the reinstated services and contacted accordingly.

“SAA is continuing to work with its partner airlines, Mango and SA Airlink, to re-book all customers travelling on domestic services for Tuesday 19 November 2019 and Wednesday 20 November 2019.

3,000 of SAA’s 5,000-strong workforce walked off the job last Friday over salary demands. Employees, organised by the National Union of Mineworkers of SA (Numsa) and the SA Cabin Crew Association (Sacca) are demanding an eight percent salary increase, against an offer of 5.9 percent by the company.

The airline is in a dire financial state and is unable to cover costs from the revenue it generates. A R5.5bn bailout from government in October plus an undertaking to repay its debt, is not sufficient to keep SAA flying without further government assistance.

On Friday, the airline cancelled all flights but resumed international flights Tuesday. Domestic flights remain cancelled with some passengers being accommodated on Mango and other airlines.

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