Numsa confused by grounding

Numsa confused by grounding
Comair Douglas DC-3 in 1973

The grounding of Kulula and Comair has ‘shocked and confused’ Numsa (The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa. The decision was taken due to a cash-flow crises and announced by Comair Management and its Business Rescue Partners on 31 May.

The trade union is concerned as to whether there will be money to pay workers.

A meeting was held on 2 June with Comair management but Numsa general secretary Irvin Jim said the meeting with the chief executive “left us with more questions than answers. Unfortunately, the meeting was very frustrating because the CEO was at times evasive or unwilling to respond directly to certain questions.”

Numsa has some 700 members at the company. Jim said they had asked whether employees would be paid their salaries during the period of the suspension, which management would not confirm.

“We asked how long the suspension of operations would be in place. They could not say because it depends on whether the funding could be raised by the BRPs (business rescue practitioners),” said Jim.

The airline would also not disclose the amount of funds it would require to be financially sustainable because “they say that information is confidential”. The airline would also not provide timelines to raise the funding for the airline. The union warned it would picket outside Comair premises on 3 June in support of its call for the immediate resignation of chief executive Glen Orsmond and the end of the business rescue process.”

Pic credit: By Thomas Bor –, GFDL 1.2,