SAA appoints key managers as part of turnaround strategy
CITIZEN.CO.ZA / 12 APRIL 2018 - 17.55 / STAFF REPORTER
The urgency to bring skills into SAA to stabilize leadership cannot be overemphasised, chief executive Vuyani Jarana says.
A number of key appointments, including a procurement specialist, have been announced today by South African Airways (SAA) to fill the critical skills gap at the troubled airline as it forges ahead with implementing its turnaround strategy.
A South African Airways Airbus A320 lands on runway 03R at OR Tambo International Airport in Kempton Park, 22 September 2016. Picture: Neil McCartney
The embattled airline is currently implementing its turnaround plan aimed at returning the company to financial sustainability, with leadership driving the implementation of the strategy.
SAA appointed Kenneth Pillay as a procurement specialist, effective 12 April. The airline said Pillay will also act as chief procurement officer whilst the recruitment process is being finalized.
Pillay has more than 20 years experience in integrated supply chain management, which ranges from demand and procurement planning, strategic sourcing, global sourcing, and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) implementation across various organisations.
Bob Head was appointed interim chief financial officer, effective from Wednesday 11 April 2018. SAA said Head has extensive management experience in different senior management roles both locally and internationally.
Last month SAA suspended CFO Phumeza Nhantsi and former chief executive Musa Zwane following unspecified allegations made against them in a forensic probe of the state-owned airline.
SAA chief executive Vuyani Jarana said that the urgency to bring skills into SAA to stabilize leadership cannot be overemphasised.
“We have always maintained that we will adopt a three-pronged strategy to bring skills into SAA,” Jarana said.
“These include searching for experienced executives to fill vacancies on a permanent basis, appointing interim executives with experience to fill the gaps whilst searching for permanent executives as well as engaging industry firms to bring capacity at short notice to industrialise our turnaround interventions.”
Phumla Luhabe was officially appointed as chief commercial officer, a position she has occupied since 19 February.
Luhabe is joining SAA from her previous position as general manager of commercial for SAA subsidiary, Mango Airline since 2008. She has over 20 years of senior management experience, 15 of which are in the airline industry.
Hendus Venter was appointed as chief information officer (CIO) effective 1 May. Venter is currently group CIO for African Bank. He has over 20 years senior management experience in banking, insurance and technology.
SAA also appointed Mpati Amelia as acting chief legal officer on a fixed-term contract basis effective 3 April. She is an advocate at the Johannesburg bar and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience having being involved in significant public cases.
Thabang Motsohi and Vuyolwethu Tuku were also appointed as regulatory policy officer and manager in the office of the chief executive, respectively, in a bid to assist with governance issues in key areas.
“These appointments will enhance capacity at executive levels to accelerate the execution of required strategy initiatives,” Jarana said.
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