Zim may cancel flights to SA

2011-12-05 18:07

Harare - Zimbabwe's state-owned carrier Air Zimbabwe might cancel flights to South Africa because its planes could be impounded in Johannesburg over unpaid bills, aviation sources said on Monday.

The airline has been banned from numerous destinations for non-payment of landing rights.

But debts to a South African baggage handling company have piled up to such an extent that daily flights from Harare to Johannesburg might end.

Last Friday, an Air Zimbabwe Boeing 737-500 plane was impounded at OR Tambo airport for several hours.

Bid Air Services, the main baggage handling company in South Africa, seized the plane after Air Zimbabwe failed to pay $500 000 to clear unpaid bills.

"A forklift truck was parked at the back of the plane so it couldn't leave," an Air Zimbabwe engineer told dpa.

Passengers had to walk to the terminal building because no buses were provided.

The airline continued flying to and from Johannesburg over the weekend and on Monday, but sources would not say whether flights would continue into Tuesday.

The cash crunch also impacted Europe and Asia-bound flights this past weekend, when the airline's two Boeing 767 long-haul aircraft couldn't fly to London and Beijing because of "unavailability of funds to purchase fuel", said a senior member of Air Zimbabwe staff said.

On several previous occasions, passengers on board have been asked by the airline's crew for donations to pay for fuel or landing rights.

Huge debts and mismanagement have brought Air Zimbabwe to its current crisis.

  • Poloyatonki - 2011-12-05 18:14

    I hope this will reduce the number of Zim people entering our country.

      Susanna - 2011-12-05 18:27

      Zimbabwean students at the Fort Hare university are waiting on transport money from Mr Mugabe or else they cannot go home for the December holidays. Is it possible they may have supported the ANCYL march for economic freedom?

      Walter - 2011-12-05 18:37

      They do not arrive by plane, generally! I cannot believe that I am even responding to such a stupid comment though..

      PyroSA - 2011-12-05 18:52

      The ones with enough money to fly probably aren't the illegals we want to keep out anyway :p

      Ibhubesi - 2011-12-05 18:55

      @Walter. Have a sense of humour! If you knew Poloyatonki well enough you would know he is tormenting all on here! LOL LOL But yes, they don't arrive first class! They walk here. This old fool in Zimbabwe can't get out of power soon enough now!

      Sheik - 2011-12-05 19:10

      They already all here, or have you not noticed?

      Ibhubesi - 2011-12-05 19:11

      @Spyker. You have a very valid argument. However, my suggestion is that we only allow people with Grade 12 to vote. We can not allow countries to go down the drain by voters that blindly believe all the rubbish told to them by unscrupulous gangsters like the ones we have here in power. Zim is gone. Won't recover for decades to come. We need to save ourselves. When you are stuck in a shack and a politician promises you a house, you vote for him. The problem is, the poor have now heard enough promises and we are heading for our revolution like the Libyans did!

      Sean - 2011-12-05 19:14

      At the rate we are going down , we`ll be soon in the same boat ! All these pro Malema supporters , TAKE NOTE !!!

      Sheik - 2011-12-05 19:38

      At Spyker May: Your question can never be answered. A few attempts can be made, but to avail.

      Dan - 2011-12-05 23:25

      Bull$$HIT , you are all a lot of bloody agents !!! Zim is the only country in the world where everybody is a BILLIONARE. And the only one that can be thanked for that is MAD BOB for his visionary leadership

  • Omnivore - 2011-12-05 18:22


      John - 2011-12-05 18:32

      Hey, don't insult clowns. They do a good job making us smile and laugh. Oh! You are right they are clowns because they do make us laugh.

      Dan - 2011-12-05 23:30

      Bull$$HIT , you are all a lot of bloody agents !!! Zim is the only country in the world where everybody is a BILLIONARE. And the only one that can be thanked for that is MAD BOB for his visionary leadership

  • Grant - 2011-12-05 18:26

    Good! Keep them on the ground. If they can't pay landing fee's, just how much are they spending on maintaining their aircraft in an airworthy condition?

      Bob - 2011-12-05 18:49

      Very valid point Grant!

      Ibhubesi - 2011-12-05 18:56

      Very valid point indeed!

      Jerhone - 2011-12-05 21:51

      they should allow our ministers to fly air Zimbabwe,because they don't check your bags in fact i don't think they even check the planes bon voyage

  • Hunter - 2011-12-05 18:44

    But Ju Ju reckon Zim has the best economic policy in Africa!

      Sean - 2011-12-05 19:18

      Yip and we can see how the country is `blossoming``!!! Mugabe has so many senior ANC members by the balls , that is why the ANC government will never try and intervene

      Dan - 2011-12-05 23:31

      Bull$$HIT , you are all a lot of bloody agents !!! Zim is the only country in the world where everybody is a BILLIONARE. And the only one that can be thanked for that is MAD BOB for his visionary leadership

  • Gregory Jurgens - 2011-12-05 18:46

    What a tragic story right on Christmas too. Is there an bank account where we can donate money to help them.

      Ibhubesi - 2011-12-05 19:01

      LOL LOL. Now that I see who wrote this, I'm crawling on the floor of laughter! Very funny Gregory!

  • Ian - 2011-12-05 18:47

    they still have planes

      Ibhubesi - 2011-12-05 19:02

      Not for long Ian. The next trip to Hong Kong will have Grace stranded on the Airport with all her Christmas shopping and Bob alone at home!

      Capt - 2011-12-07 00:16


  • Ramudzuli Muthuphei - 2011-12-05 18:51


  • Comrade - 2011-12-05 18:52

    ANC take note...this is where we a are heading too!!!!

      Sean - 2011-12-05 19:19

      100% spot on !

  • Chaapo - 2011-12-05 18:57

    Take your notes SA on the route that Malema wants you to take after his idol RGM. However do not slag Zimbos but the incompetent leadership and Mbeki and company who endosed the stolen election and Zuma who continues to suppress publication of that fact. Given the xperiences they have had, Smith, RGM and members of the GNU, they know no one is worth dying for because these corrupt power hungry people are cut from the same cloth (that is why it made me laugh the Malema we will die for Zuma bit). As for Zimbos leaving, they are doing what smart people do, voting with their feet. Whether they walk, crawl in or fly in is immaterial to these "Jews" of Africa - they are smart and courageous enough to leave.

      Ibhubesi - 2011-12-05 19:17

      I fully agree! I would rather have the ones with ambition here and see the rest starve with that old fool they so blindly follow. Our problem is, where do we go, because we are almost there where Zim is now!

  • mugo.mudzi - 2011-12-05 19:24

    Oops, Rhodies again, most African countries had a higher currency rate generally based on the gold exchange, this evened out over the years you fool. No excuse for what's happening with Zim currency though.

  • Call_Of_Muti_3 - 2011-12-05 19:26

    What is counter-revolutionary conspiracy? How dare the SA airports threaten to ground Zimbabwean planes? Are they tools of the White Masters? These bloody agents should not be allowed to operate with their capitalistic tendencies.

  • nicn44 - 2011-12-05 20:18

    A once proud airline & country. Mugabe and ZANU PF have a lot to answer for. When are zimbabweans going to rise up?

      Jerhone - 2011-12-05 21:56

      yes listen and obey the real BOB.................................MARLEY

      geoffjleach - 2011-12-06 18:56

      With what ??

  • George - 2011-12-05 20:37

    ANC FRANCHISE does it again

  • Winsome - 2011-12-05 20:37

    I cannot believe the crew ask the passengers for donations to pay for fuel or landing rights!! What's the bet the "donations" end up in the crew's pockets?

  • Neville - 2011-12-05 21:01

    They don't need a plane most of them walk 2 SA

      morlyn.giffard - 2011-12-14 14:14

      @Neville I`d rather walk than risk my life on mugabe`s unservised baskets so called planes LOL

  • Cracker - 2011-12-05 21:52

    Economic freedom in practice.

  • des.strydom - 2011-12-06 06:23

    hahaha, the country was 100% better during Rhodesian UDI. HAHAHA

  • Harald - 2011-12-06 07:35

    Things to come for our mines,hey??

  • phillip.havenga - 2011-12-06 07:40

    And there are still brain dead idiots in that country that support that useless thing Robert Mugabe. This is just pathetic.

  • Harald - 2011-12-06 07:42

    Please note; take this to heart and never forget this: ZIM, WILL NEVER EVER RECOVER... PROMISE

  • Andre - 2011-12-06 08:20

    Why were they let off? If Bid Air Services are so stupid to fall for their promises, let them have it.

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