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SAA to challenge order to pay R12m for 'meteorological weather fees' in Zimbabwe

10 January 2020 - 18:54 By Kgaugelo Masweneng
A South African Airways Airbus A320. File photo.
A South African Airways Airbus A320. File photo.
Image: SAA

SA Airways (SAA) confirmed on Friday that a high court judge in Zimbabwe had ordered it to pay R12m in outstanding “meteorological weather fees”.

Zimbabwe's ministry of environment, water and climate brought the case against the airline in 2014.

It argued that SAA had used Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport and Victoria Falls Airport since 2006 — without paying the fees, according to a report by AllAfrica.com

“SAA’s legal representatives in Zimbabwe have filed an appeal against the judgment in the Supreme Court,” SAA spokesperson Tlali Tlali said on Friday.

“There will, therefore, be no action that can be taken against SAA until the determination of the case by the Supreme Court.” 

NewsDay reported in 2016 that SAA argued that it had been paying departure, landing and overnight fees to the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe (CAAZ) and there was “nothing at law called meteorological fees separately”.

SAA argued that the environment ministry and aviation authority were duplicating roles and not communicating with each other, leading to “confusion”.

High court judge Ephraim Tagu however ruled that there was nothing wrong in the environment ministry seeking to claim what was owed to CAAZ, reported AllAfrica.com

The meteorological weather services fees in dispute cover the period between January 2006 and April 30, 2014.