South Africa: SAA Launches App, Denies Victimisation of Staff

Johannesburg — SOUTH Africa Airways (SAA) has denied allegations of preventing employees from accessing "negative" stories about the company through mobile phones and computers, among other devices issued by the airline.

Tlali Tlali, company spokesperson, rejected the claims as SAA launched an Employee App, envisaged to promote communication and access to information by staff.

"We are astounded by bizarre claims that the airline has taken steps to prevent its employees from accessing negative stories about the company using its," Tlali said.

He said this was not only untrue, but was impossible to implement at SAA.

"We are not aware that any such advanced technology exists and we do not even have any such provision in our Information Technology (IT), Human Resources or Communication policies."

SAA's app, meanwhile, is said to be innovative and the first of its kind in the history of the airline. SAA was founded in 1934.

The app, which can be downloaded on mobile devices, will enable employees to interact with the chief executive officer, Vuyani Jarana, and management in a more direct and secure manner.

Tlali said the app would enable all employees to have more access to management and information in real time.

The intention here is to enable communication through as many channels as possible for employees to use what is convenient to them. In addition, we seek to promote and not prevent access to information," said the SAA spokesperson.

Last week, Members of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Accounts (SCOPA) led by its chairperson, Themba Godi, spent days at SAA as part of the committee's oversight responsibilities.

SAA, in a statement, said at no stage did the committee raise concerns that SAA employees complained about information clampdown within the company.

"If such unsubstantiated claims were made, we believe they must be rejected as they have no basis in fact and cannot be sustained by any credible evidence. These claims sought to create confusion, hurt the SAA brand and mislead members of SCOPA and the public at large," SAA stated.

Strikes by workers have beset SAA in recent months.

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