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Comair Comes to a Halt

FILE: An aircraft from South African low cost airline Kulula takes off from Cape Town International airport September 15, 2015. The liquidation of Comair also grounded subsidiary Kulula as of June 1, 2022.

Comair, the South African operator of British Airways flights, filed for liquidation Thursday after its bankruptcy administrators failed to raise enough money to keep it in the air.

The administrators of South Africa-based Comair have "lodged a court application to convert the business rescue proceedings into liquidation proceedings", the company said in a statement.

"Regrettably, the requisite funding could not be raised in order for the company to continue with its operations," the statement continued.

The liquidation also affects Comair's budget carrier Kulula, which parked its planes on June 1 when operating funds ran dry.

In May 2020, at the height of pandemic lockdowns, Comair filed for voluntary business rescue -- South Africa's version of bankruptcy protection -- in order to restructure the company.

By February this year, the company had regained a 40 percent market share and resumed most flights, but problems remained.

South African aviation officials suspended Comair's flights for five days in March over safety concerns.

The airline has also struggled due to its order of eight Boeing 737 MAX planes. One was delivered when the planes were grounded in 2019 following two fatal crashes.

Comair has fought a US court battle to cancel the order.

The company has been flying since 1946.