SA Airways was barred from a hasty return to the skies by the SA Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) over the weekend, scuppering a plan for the national carrier to retrieve and deliver SA’s first batch of Covid-19 vaccines.

The airline has been mothballed since September, with limited operations over the nine months before that. In terms of civil aviation rules aircraft must be serviced and maintained during downtime and the crew, particularly pilots, kept flight ready by flying or by doing simulator training...

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