SAA director Martin Kingston resigns amid cash crunch

By Loni Prinsloo

(Bloomberg) – Martin Kingston resigned as a director of South African Airways on Friday as the state-owned airline’s administrator scrambles for cash to keep it going.

“There is no need for me to be on the board given the appointment of the Business Rescue Practitioners,” Kingston, the executive chairman of Rothschild & Co.’s South African unit, said in a text message. “I will continue to offer input to the extent required.”

Also read: Open letter: This is how we fix SAA

The loss-making carrier has been under voluntary business rescue, a local form of bankruptcy protection, since December as the administrator tries to nurse the company back to health. Finance Minister Tito Mboweni on Thursday said that National Treasury and the Department of Public Enterprises are trying to find additional funding for the airline.

Also read: Can banker Martin Kingston save Eskom and SAA?

SAA has not received R2bn ($138m) from Treasury that is needed to keep the carrier operational, Business Day reported on Thursday, citing the airline’s administrator. It may suspend flights if it doesn’t receive the money by Sunday, the Johannesburg-based newspaper said.

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