Carol Paton Editor at Large

If the Treasury is unable to hold the line on further bailouts for SAA we can conclude that it is unable to hold the line on anything. That is the sense both inside and outside the Treasury, as officials — director-general Dondo Mogajane in particular — come under formidable pressure to bend and extend one last lifeline to SAA.

Through almost a week of intense discussions in which public enterprises minister Pravin Gordhan has shuttled between SAA, the Treasury and lenders, trying to broker a deal, the Treasury has so far stood firm. Much hinges on whether it can continue to do so or whether Gordhan — who has the support of President Cyril Ramaphosa — can push the Treasury to provide the resources to keep SAA on expensive life support a little longer.

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