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SAA business rescue plan to be published in May, acting CEO steps down

26th March 2020 BY: Rebecca Campbell
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

The business rescue practitioners (BRPs) for South African Airways (SAA) have been given an extension to May 29 to publish the business rescue plan for the airline.

The business plan was previously set to be published on March 31, amid a national lockdown to try to prevent the further spread of Covid-19.

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Further, SAA also announced on March 26 that its acting CEO Zuks Ramasia, was taking early retirement. Her last day with the State-owned company would be this coming April 14. She started her career with the airline in 1992 as a cabin crew member.

“On behalf of the board, I would like to thank Zuks for her leadership, passionate commitment and selfless contribution during her illustrious 27 years at SAA,” affirmed SAA board acting chairperson Thandeka Mgoduso. “Her journey was truly an example of how a number of women are progressively moving up the ranks in previously male-dominated industries. We extend our sincerest gratitude to Zuks for her contribution at SAA and wish her success in her future endeavours.”

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Following her start at the airline as cabin crew member, Ramasia was promoted to senior cabin crew member, then to a safety and emergency procedures instructor, before becoming a manager in the Crew Movement section in 2000. At the end of 2005, she was appointed head of the carrier’s Global Operations Control Centre. After seven years in that post, she became GM for operations in 2012. In June last year she was appointed acting CEO. In October 2019 she also became chairperson of the Airlines Association of Southern Africa.

She has been an advocate for the aviation industry. During her career she has held directorial positions in international aviation bodies, including the Operations Committee of the International Air Transport Association. 

Ramasia has also been a strong advocate for gender equality and ending discrimination against women in the aviation sector. She inspired other women into careers in aviation and appointed women to senior positions that had previously always been occupied by men. As a result, she was, in 2019, a finalist in the Standard Bank Top Women Awards. 

The SAA board stated that it would “in due course” announce an interim replacement for Ramasia. SAA is currently undergoing business rescue. 

EDITED BY: Creamer Media Reporter
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