The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) expressed "disgust" at the sale of South African Express to Fly SAX for a R50-million.
On Wednesday one of the provisional liquidators of SA Express, Aviwe Ndyamara, briefed Parliament’s select committee on public enterprises and communication about the sale.
In a statement issued on Friday EFF said "SA Express owes its creditors a total of R980-million, and it owes SA Revenue Service [Sars] R150-million and about R183-million to workers".
The party said the R50-million price tag was too low for a brand like SA Express.
“The R50-million from the entity is not even going to scratch the surface of the totality of the debt of SA Express. Essentianly the airline is sold for next to nothing,” said the scathing EFF statement.
“As we argued before, this is the modus operandi of the protagonist of new forms of state capture,” the party said.
The EFF said the privatisation of the airline was a dishonest move to collapse State Owned Enterprises.
“The privatisation of SA Express is one of the many dishonest orchestrated manoeuvres to deliberately collapse strategic state-owned assets by Pravin Gordhan [Minister of Public Enterprises], only to sell them to his friends and family at a reduced price,” the EFF claimed.
The party said SA Express served major regional economic hubs that were not served by mainstream airline.
“The rapid degeneration of SA Express, dysfunctional management, non-payment of workers’ salaries and unmanageable debts could have been prevented if the government was interested in building state capacity,” said the EFF.
SA Express has been in provisional liquidation since April last year.