|Debt costs Airzim plane|
|Tuesday, 17 May 2011 22:24|
By Takunda Maodza
The workers said they were also angry with the manner in which the parastatal was being run.
Workers are reportedly owed salaries dating back to 2009.
The suspension would make it impossible for Airzim clients to make bookings from abroad.
Highly-placed sources at Airzim said Zambezi Airlines - which was paid US$1,8 million deposit at the beginning of the lease - on Monday notified the parastatal of its intention to withdraw its plane, but nothing was done to avert the situation.
Airzim is facing cash flow challenges and signed the lease agreement with Zambezi Airlines after its pilots went on strike two months ago.
The source said there were signs that all was not well on Monday night when on landing at the Harare International Airport, the Air Zambezi plane flew back to Lusaka.
Airzim retired three Boeing 737-300s a month ago and entered into a deal with Zambezi Airlines to service the routes.
Zambezi Airlines offices in Harare would not comment on the matter yesterday, referring The Herald to its Lusaka head offices.
"I am in Geneva at the moment and I am not aware of such a development," he said.
"We are yet to be paid part of our April salaries and we doubt whether the company would be able to raise our May salaries. We met in the morning and resolved to confront management over this and other issues. We believe the airline is not being managed properly," said an employee who could not be named.
The workers are unhappy that Airzim entered into a deal with Zambezi Airlines, a competitor.
"We were later addressed by acting Air Zimbabwe chief executive officer Mr Innocent Mavhunga who said he was going to engage the Ministry of Transport, Communication and Infrastructural Development and highlight our concerns," said an employee.
However, Mr Mavhunga could not be drawn into commenting yesterday, as he said he was in a meeting.