Information gleaned from informed contacts at Air Zimbabwe by Radio VOP, shows that the troubled airline, which suspended normal flights in January recently called its flight crew of pilots and airhostesses to attend one week refresher courses at the airline’s headquarters at Harare International Airport to enable them to keep their licenses current and fly at short notice.
The training sessions which are being conducted by the airline’s operations safety training officers are held in phases and commenced last week where the first batch of pilots and air hostesses attended.
The second group commenced training on Tuesday.
“The refresher training is done internally and the first session was completed last week on Thursday and a new group started today (Tuesday),” said one of the Air Zimbabwe’s insiders.
Pilots are subjected to regular tests to ensure that they are still capable of performing their duties.
Air Zimbabwe, which grounded all its planes in January, intends to resume domestic and international flights in May. The airline is currently grounded and is not servicing any routes owing to poor management and lack of funding. Last year, creditors seized the airline’s aircraft in South Africa and UK over debts.
Transport, Communications and Infrastructure Development Minister, Minister Nicholas Goche recently told Parliament that the government had disbanded Air Zimbabwe Holdings and formed a new state-owned company, Air Zimbabwe Private Limited while National Handling Services, a subsidiary of Air Zimbabwe Holdings, will now operate as a stand-alone company.
Goche also announced the appointment of an interim board led by his permanent secretary Pattison Mbiriri to oversee the airline’s operations and indicated that the government would soon engage a strategic partner to invest in the newly created airline.
But the airline’s current management led by acting chief executive officer, Innocent Mavhunga told workers that it was in the dark about the transformation of the airline, which was announced by Goche. Mavhunga told workers a fortnight ago that he was yet to be appraised about the new arrangement.