South Africa: SA Express Seeks UIF Assistance to Pay Salaries to Employees

analysis

SA Express is looking for help from the UIF to pay March salaries even though it hasn't made contributions to the fund - on behalf of its employees - since it was placed under involuntary business rescue by the High Court in Johannesburg on 6 February 2020.

SA Express will be the first distressed State-owned Enterprise to approach the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) for assistance to pay outstanding March 2020 salaries to its 691 employees, because it has completely run out of cash and might be liquidated.

SA Express is seeking emergency assistance from the UIF, which has a disaster benefit called the temporary employee relief scheme (Ters) that was put in place by the government to assist financially distressed companies to deal with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Funds from Ters are intended to give financial support to employees who have either been laid off (temporarily or permanently) during the Covid-19 pandemic and the resultant 21-day nationwide shutdown imposed by President Cyril Ramaphosa to contain the spread of the novel virus.

The financial situation at SA Express, the second state-owned airline, whose flight routes typically service SA's smaller cities and neighbouring countries, has deteriorated further as it has...

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