16 September 2014
   
New Zimbabwe Header
Grace’s super-speedy PhD stuns world
Tsvangirai vows Mugabe confrontation
Brain-extracting Gweru killer acquitted
Man drags wife to court over abortion
ConCourt frees civil society activists
Govt moves to reduce cervical cancer deaths
Russia prospecting for diamonds in Zim
‘Baba Jukwa’ fined $150 on bullets rap
MORE NEWS
Royalty on gold cut to boost production
ZMDC seals Russia equipment deal
MORE BUSINESS
Kumasowe to premiere at Book Café
Pistorius promised rough prison ride
MORE SHOWBIZ
Dinyero delighted with his charges
Ministers back 2017 Nations Cup bid
MORE SPORTS
China, Russia gang-up for Zim plunder
Dulini Ncube: A fighter for democracy
MORE OPINION
 
Update on UK immigration reforms
Dr Chireka: Making the most of doctor trip
MORE COLUMNISTS
 
 
Air Zimbabwe plane seized over debt
18/05/2011 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter
 
 
RELATED STORIES
US envoy wanted AirZim sell-off
Air Zimbabwe gets new planes
Pilots break strike for Mugabe flights
Ministers seek end to Air Zim strike
Air Zimbabwe needs US$20mln
Harare to get 'longest runway'
Air Zim planes cleared to fly
Air Zim puts passengers on buses
Air Zim cancels flights over fuel debt
Biti rejects 'loan shark' AirZim bail-out
Hoogstraten weighs Air Zim bail-out
IATA demands $2m from Air Zimbabwe
Air Zim cancels regional flights
IATA suspends Air Zim over debt
Air Zimbabwe fails to pay salaries
Travelers hit with US$30 airport charge
Air Zim gets new Airbus jets: paper
Air Zimbabwe pilots end strike
Air Zimbabwe leases aircraft
Air Zimbabwe: 50 pilots for 5 planes
Pilots press on with 'illegal' strike
Pilots seize Air Zimbabwe property

AIR Zimbabwe lurched into a new crisis on Tuesday after one of its planes was seized over a US$460,000 debt, forcing the airline to cancel all regional flights.

The Zambia-based Zambezi Airlines withdrew its Boeing 737-500 which it made available to Air Zimbabwe on a long-term lease in March this year.

The plane reportedly flew into Harare on a scheduled flight on Monday night, but it immediately turned back -- throwing the airline's schedule into disarray.

The action came just days after the International Air Transit Association (IATA) ordered its 60,000 accredited travel agents to stop making bookings for the beleaguered airline over a US$280,000 debt.

The loss of the plane leaves the airline flying only one route between Harare and London, in addition to its two domestic routes, chief executive Innocent Mavhunga told AFP.

"Yes, there have been problems with Zambezi Airlines, but we are negotiating with our partners," Mavhunga said. "Only regional regional flights have been affected."

Air Zimbabwe leased the Boeing 737 to fly domestic and regional routes after withdrawing its three 737s which are undergoing major service.

The struggling airline, which reportedly paid a US$1,8 million deposit in March as part of the plane’s lease agreement, was this week also facing pressure from hundreds of workers who have not been paid their April salaries.

The state-owned airline's problems have built up over the last decade owing to mismanagement, ageing planes and delays in changing the airline’s ticketing policy from the worthless Zimbabwe dollar to the multi-currency system now in use since 2009.

The Zimbabwe government’s failure to acquire new planes, say airline bosses, has given the advantage to its competitors.

The airline, said to be making a US$3 million loss every month, was brought to its knees in September last year after pilots went on a two-week strike. A second walkout in March this year lasted a month.

A senior manager at the airline said last night: “The strike last September was catastrophic for the already struggling company. We have been playing catch-up since, and the second strike this year made that job doubly difficult.”

Transport Minister Nicholas Goche is said to be out of the country. Weekend reports said he was planning to appoint a new board and management team at the airline.



Advertisement


 
Email this to a friend Printable Version Discuss This Story
Share this article:

Digg it

Del.icio.us

Reddit

Newsvine

Nowpublic

Stumbleupon

Face Book

Myspace

Fark
 
 
 
comments powered by Disqus
 
RSS NewsTicker