From : Zimdiaspora.com
Troubled Air Zimbabwe is to resume international London flights in July, board chairman Ozias Bvute has said.
Bvute revealed this while being interviewed by the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on State Enterprises and Parastatals on the current status of the airline.
The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee was chaired by Larry Mavhima.
“We have looked at route viability and we have identified the short-term routes that we think we want to concentrate on and ensure that those routes are managed and serviced properly for the benefit of our travelling partners,” Bvute said.
“We would like to systematically work on introducing routes as we perfect our service on the ones we have so far, increase Harare-Bulawayo–Victoria Falls and Harare-Johannesburg and on July 1, we would like to return to the Harare-London route and to be reinstated twice a week.
The Diaspora wants us to come back, so we are actively working to see that on the 1st of July we have reinstated that route.”
He said to ease load on the Boeing 737 flying on the Bulawayo and Victoria Falls route, a team of Chinese engineers was in the country to repair one of the MA60 planes to service domestic routes.
“MA60 is actually a very good plane. Right now we have a team of Chinese engineers who are at Air Zimbabwe in the process of servicing one of the MA60s because it is our intention to service Harare-Bulawayo-Victoria Falls using the MA60. It’s not viable for us to use the 737,” Bvute said.
He also disclosed that they were in the process of acquiring some planes to service local and regional routes.
“We are in the process of acquiring Embraer planes by way of lease.
Embraers are slightly more fuel efficient for us and they will enable us to fly more regional routes. So, it’s our intention to have those and we hope we will do that in the shortest time possible,” Bvute added.
He said there had been a gradual increase in the number of people using the airline since December last year.