Skywise Airline pens desperate open letter after being grounded
Johannesburg - Desperate to keep its business afloat, Skywise Airline has penned an open letter to President Jacob Zuma and his deputy, Cyril Ramaphosa, asking for help.
The airline, which Airports Company South Africa (Acsa) grounded indefinitely, faces the threat of closure due to unpaid service fees. Today, Acsa said the suspension would lift as soon as payment is made. Skywise admits that it is R8 million in debt, offering in the letter that: "...with R4 million in arrears with ACSA and R4 million with ATNS, the airline is already on Fly as You Pay."
"We've got 200 employees who will be jobless not only in the month of Christmas, but God knows until when in a country with choking unemployment levels at about 20%,' read a part of the letter.
Today's grounding left several passengers stranded and without a clue as to when or if they would be accommodated for their flights. It's also unclear if they will be refunded.
In a statement, the airline suggested that its debt was expected for the aviation industry and that it was close to turning it around to become sustainable.
The airline also asked government to allow the national carrier -- South African Airways -- to assist with flight accommodation for stranded passengers.
List of Failed Airlines in South Africa, according to Wikipedia. This list is open to correction.
- 1time (2004-2012)
- Avia Airlines (1995, started and ended operations the same year)
- Charlan Air Charter (1992–2006)
- Flitestar (1991–1993)
- Intensive Air (1989–2002)
- Maiden Air (2003 - 03)
- Nationwide Airlines (1995 - 2008)
- Pelican Air Services (2001-2009)
- Sun Air (ceased operations 1999)
- Trek Airways (1953–1994)
- Union Airways (1929–34)
- Velvet Sky (2011–2012)
Skywise Airline's Open Letter to Government