SA Express is readying itself for take-off, it said on Thursday.
In its statement, the airline, falling within the ambit of the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE), said the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) reinstated its Aircraft Maintenance Organisation (AMO) certification on Friday, 22 June 2018.
Since then, SA Express has undergone a stringent and rigorous process to meet the regulator’s high standards.
“All of our corrective action plans were accepted by the CAA for all the findings which led to the suspension of the AMO and the Air Operators Certificate (AOC). A team comprising members of the newly appointed Board of Directors, the Ministerial Intervention Team, as well as SA Express’ dedicated employees have worked tirelessly to implement the CAA approved corrective action plans (CAPS),” said the airline.
In May, the authority announced the suspension of SA Express’s air operator’s certificate and the certificates of airworthiness (CoA) of nine of the 21 aircraft being operated by the airline.
This effectively meant that as of 24 May, SA Express Pty (SOC) could no longer continue to operate as an airline. In order to be able to operate, SA Express will have to reapply and be issued with the relevant approvals (an air operating certificate), and an approval for the aircraft maintenance organisation, and certificates of airworthiness for the grounded aircraft.
In its statement on Thursday, SA Express assured the public and its customers that it has focused intensely on addressing the root causes that led to its grounding.
The airline said it has restructured the internal processes that led to the grounding.
“Today, the final phase of the five-phase CAA process to re-certify the airline’s Air Operators Certificate (AOC) has commenced. As soon as the SA Express AOC has been reinstated by the CAA, the airline will be ready to again fly its passengers in comfort and safety.”
In addition, the SA Express board on Wednesday briefed Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan on progress achieved since the May grounding.
“The SA Express Board, Ministerial Intervention Team, together with loyal staff have made very significant progress to return the airline to full operation in the very near future,” said Gordhan.
Following the grounding, South African Airways (SAA) announced an extended schedule as part of interventions to sustain the SA Express network.
At the time, SAA announced a replacement capacity schedule for a year with partner airlines so as to support SA Express passengers.