SAA not worried over acting CEO’s qualifications

BY CHARL BOSCH - NOVEMBER 25, 2014

Embattled national carrier, South African Airways (SAA), has announced its support for acting CEO Nico Bezuidenhout, after an article in the Sunday Times revealed that he had not obtained a BCom degree or an MBA as stipulated on his CV.

“The board of South African Airways (SAA) stands by its decision to appoint Mr Nico Bezuidenhout as acting chief executive officer based on his proven experience, capability and track record,” it said in a statement.

“In the opinion of the board, the tertiary studies that Mr Bezuidenhout has completed, although incomplete, provides sufficient grounding while his performance track record certainly exceed that of a number of previous, and highly qualified, airline CEO’s”.

Last week, the airline admitted that an error in its 2011/2012 annual report had attributed Bezuidenhout, who is also CEO of low-cost airline Mango, with a BCom in transport economics and industrial psychology as well as an MBA.

On Friday, the airline reportedly submitted a 10-page copy of Bezuidenhout’s CV, which showed that he had applied for the BCom at the present University of Johannesburg in 1995, but dropped out the following year. He then re-applied at the University of South Africa in 1997, majoring in industrial psychology and transport economics, but not completing taxation.

The submitted CV also points out that Bezuidenhout had applied for the MBA but never graduated due to him not handing in his thesis.

“His credentials were verified in accordance to standard SAA practices at the time, both by SAA as well as the Executive Search firm … Any claim that Mr Bezuidenhout misrepresented his qualifications is blatantly untrue,” SAA said.

In an article by CityPress yesterday, Mango chairperson, Rashid Wally, described the allegations as “disheartening”.

“Under his leadership the business has performed beyond expectations in a challenging and highly competitive market,” Wally said of Bezuidenhout, who had been at the helm of the airline since its inception in 2006.

“Under his leadership the airline showed solid growth coupled with commercial sustainability that saw record profits in the past financial year”. 

 

IMAGE sourced from flickr.com