Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) is aware of a recent incident at OR Tambo International Airport in which a passenger's baggage was tampered with and possessions stolen – ACSA regrets this incident and would like to apologise to the affected traveller sincerely.
ACSA Regional General Manager Jabulani Khambule says that ACSA will cooperate with the relevant airlines to ensure the incident is thoroughly investigated and the perpetrators are brought to book.
"I would like to remind our customers that ACSA has a zero-tolerance approach to criminality and any forms of illegal behaviour by any airport staff, whether they are directly employed by ACSA or contracted to work at our airports. We will ensure that the investigation into this incident results in the apprehension of the perpetrators who will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law," says Khambule.
However, ACSA would also like to point out that it is not responsible for baggage handling as this is done by the airlines themselves. Passengers are therefore urged to report any incidents of baggage tampering and pilfering immediately to their respective airlines so that an investigation can be carried out.
"While baggage handling is the responsibility of the airlines, ACSA will provide assistance and any relevant evidence, such as video footage, to aid the investigation and to bring those responsible to book. I would like to warn all airport staff that any illegal or criminal behaviour will result in serious consequences," says Khambule.
He also points out that ACSA can confirm that a video is currently being circulated on social media that purports to show baggage pilfering taking place at OR Tambo International Airport. However, it should be noted that the video footage is of an incident that took place four years ago. The employee involved was prosecuted and dismissed at the time of the incident.
"I would like to reiterate that ACSA has a zero-tolerance stance against any criminal behaviour perpetrated by any members of staff, as we seek to deter and fight fraud, corruption, dishonesty and theft of any kind," says Khambule.
"ACSA recently adopted an integrated, multi-agency safety and security approach throughout our airport network to enhance airport and aviation security in general. We have rolled out an aviation security model that is vertically and horizontally integrated with various law enforcement authorities to root out criminality at our airports."