Fresh Hurdle For Air Zimbabwe

Air Zimbabwe, which the government says is currently being transformed from a loss making enterprise into a profitable entity, is expected to resume operations next month. It has been grounded since January.

However, efforts to revive the airline have been dampened following revelations that the state run airline owes $1.6 million in insurance fees to its UK based insurers Marsh.

“Insurance payment for all of Air Zimbabwe’s aircraft is due and not paid rendering all aircraft grounded. The amount for the first quarter of the year stands at $ 1.6 million,” said a reliable insider at the national airline.

Last week, President Robert Mugabe ended up chartering private aircraft to ferry him from Harare to Singapore and on his return trip because Air Zimbabwe could not provide the service which he usually relies upon. Mugabe chartered an aircraft owned by Mbada Diamonds to travel from Harare to South Africa where he boarded a Singapore Airlines plane and on his return trip he chartered an aircraft from Hong Kong.