SAA Suspends Johannesburg-Lilongwe-Blantyre Route

SAA Suspends Johannesburg-Lilongwe-Blantyre Route
Photo Credit: Anna Zvereza via Wikimedia Commons.

South African Airways (SAA) has this week announced that they will be suspending services from Johannesburg to Lilongwe & Blantyre in Malawi.

It is understood that the suspension will be effective from November 30, and is due to the substantial devaluation of the Malawian Kwacha, acute foreign currency shortages, and the escalation of blocked funds.

Without further ado, let’s get into it…

SAA Suspends Johannesburg-Lilongwe-Blantyre Route…

SAA Suspends Johannesburg-Lilongwe-Blantyre Route
Anna Zvereva, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
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In the statement, Professor John Lamola, the CEO of SAA had this to say on the cancellation of services to Lilongwe & Blantyre from Johannesburg:

“This move should not be interpreted as a step back from the airline’s commitment to serving the people of Malawi and promoting trade links between South Africa and Malawi”.

“As the new leadership of SAA – and as a small but growing airline – we cannot commit to routes that are not financially sustainable”.

“SAA values its relationship with the Malawian market and thanks its customers for their understanding and continued support during these challenging times”.

“We will continue to closely monitor the situation. We remain open to resuming the route to Malawi as soon as the situation warrants the substance of financially efficient operations from this route”.

It is unclear how long it will take for SAA to resume this service to Lilongwe & Blantyre from Johannesburg, as it is overly dependent on how long the situation in Malawi lasts.

All eyes will be on the carrier and also the country to see how this plays out, and whether in the future, the carrier can return.

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