SA Airways staff face procurement probe

10 September 2010

10 September 2010 | Nick Martindale

Senior staff, including a high-ranking procurement professional, from South African Airways (SAA) could face criminal prosecution over allegations of irregularities regarding the award of contracts between 2004-09.

The allegations, which have been investigated by KPMG at the request of the new board of SAA, relate among other concerns to contracts awarded during the airline’s previous leadership.

Contracts under investigation include the award of jet fuel deals and tender processes surrounding the supply of in-flight catering services and the outsourcing of call centre operations.

Speaking to reporters after a briefing with the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (SCOPA) in August, SAA spokesman Fani Zulu said: “It is up to the prosecutors to decide, six large volumes have been handed over to them.”

Nelson Godi, chairperson of SCOPA, confirmed a briefing had taken place and said SAA had sent the KPMG report - a summary of which has been seen by SM - to the National Prosecuting Authority and Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation.

Any decision on whether to prosecute individuals would depend on the outcome of the investigation by these organisations, he said. Godi added that the issue of lack of internal control and monitoring had been raised by SCOPA at a meeting with SAA in 2007.

SAA did not respond to SM’s request for a comment.

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