On Tuesday, 14 March 2018, the accounting officer of Bitou Municipality, Mr. J. B. Douglas (Acting Municipal Manager), pursuant to a resolution of a Special Council meeting of 28 February 2018, issued a notice to CEMAIR to cease operations immediately and to vacate the Plettenberg Bay Airport premises within 30 (thirty) days, due to breach on their part and non-performance of the provisions of their undertakings.
Originally Bitou Municipality, through its municipal manager, Mr. T. C. Ndlovu, gave an extension to CEMAIR, in March 2017, for the continued use of the Plettenberg Bay Airport, for the operations of the airline. This extension was granted on the basis of a fixed monthly fee, with payment to commence on 1 April 2017. Since the company did not honour the provisions of this written undertaking, the Bitou Council, at its last meeting, after robust debate and sharp interrogation of the relationship between Bitou Municipality and CEMAIR, and the current operations and functions of the Airport and the potential, resolved to sever ties with CEMAIR.
An extract from the unconfirmed minutes of the Special Council meeting, on Wednesday, 28 February 2018, detailing the decision of the Special Council with reference C/6/40/02/18, File reference: 17/12/3, reads thus;
That commercial airlines be invited through the Supply Chain Management procurement processes to conduct operations/ business from Plettenberg Bay Airport;
That the lease/ rental period be determined for a period of five (5) years;
That Bitou Municipality continue to engage with National Treasury regarding the entering into of a Public Private Partnership with an airline carrier/ commercial airline;
That the Acting Municipal Manager be instructed to stop the operations of the current airline operator with immediate effect and that a letter of demand be forwarded to them to recover the outstanding amount payable to the municipality;
That the necessary administrative actions be put in place to protect Council’s interest; and finally
That a media statement be released regarding the status quo of the airport.
The process to commence with the SCM process will now start in all earnest to ultimately appoint and enter into an agreement with an airline operator/ carrier for five years, in terms of all the applicable and relevant prescripts.
The Plettenberg Bay Airport will otherwise remain fully operational with municipal staff and security, to deal with all general aviation users, using the facilities and premises at Plettenberg Bay Airport.
Issued on behalf of the Acting Municipal Manager, Mr. Johnny B. Douglas.
For enquiries, kindly refer to Manfred Van Rooyen, Manager: Communications & Customer Care
END.Last published 04 February 2019