….Air Zimbabwe’s ONLY plane seized in Johannesburg over debt
HARARE – Air Zimbabwe’s only operational plane has been seized by the Airports Company of South Africa (ACSA) over unpaid debts.
The plane was seized at OR Tambo International Airport on Wednesday, airline spokesman Tafadzwa Mazonde said.
The bankrupt airline owes payments to ACSA for landing, parking and passenger service fees for flights to Johannesburg.
“This is what is happening. This is a temporary suspension due to accumulated debt.
“We are in discussion with our shareholder (the government of Zimbabwe) and hope that we will find a solution,” Mazonde said, according to TimesLIVE.
The seizure of the plane forced the airline to cancel its Johannesburg-Harare flight on Wednesday night.
The aircraft also flies to Bulawayo and Victoria Falls before returning to Harare each morning to ferry passengers from Johannesburg and position itself for the evening flight to Harare.
This is not the first time that Air Zimbabwe planes have been seized by creditors. Bid Air Services of South Africa and American General Suppliers based in London had previously requested the seizure of their planes for non-payment of debts.
Air Zimbabwe was forced to suspend flights to London as its debt, now estimated at $300million, mounted.
The plane’s seizure adds to the woes of the airline, which has broken records over the years, including flying with just one passenger, as it struggles to restore customer confidence after consecutive years of mismanagement.