Air Zimbabwe Aircraft Impounded

TWO AIR Zimbabwe aircraft were impounded in December, apparently over outstanding debts.  South African company, Bid Air, impounded one of the carrier’s Boeing 737-500s at Johannesburg’s OR Tambo Airport over an outstanding $500,000 debt for ground handling services at the hub (the aircraft was released after payment was made).  Then a United States’ firm – American General Supplies (AGS) – seized a 767-200 at London’s Gatwick Airport over an alleged $1.2 million debt.
Air Zimbabwe’s acting CEO Innocent Mavhunga said the carrier was negotiating with AGS to release the aircraft.  He told a national newspaper: “The debt has been outstanding for some time and the plane has been impounded after we failed to meet the deadline of November 30 for the debt settlement.” He added that the government, which is the major shareholder in the airline, had indicated it had no money to settle the ailing airline’s mounting debts.