Africa: Air Namibia Resumes operation to Zimbabwe after a briefly suspension

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Air Namibia has resumed its flight operation to Harare, the Zimbabwean capital after it suspended operating into the country following the impounding of its aircraft.

According to a report by atqnews.com, the carrier had resolved to divert its existing flights between Hosea Kutako International Airport and Victoria Falls to Livingstone, Zambia, for the period October 06, 2018 to October 27, 2018 pending an appeal to that country’s Supreme Court.

Some Zimbabwean passengers, who were traveling as a family with visas obtained from the Turkish Consulate in Harare had sued the airlines for barring his family from travelling with the carrier. According to Air Namibia the Zimbabwean family failed the security test and were denied boarding to fly to Frankfurt.

The five applicants, all Zimbabwean nationals, brought action against Air Namibia claiming an amount of US$1 million on March 14, 2018. They were to travel to Turkey and Air Namibia denied them boarding for travelling through Germany on advice received from the German border police.

The airline in an online report by newzimbabwe.com confirmed confirmed the resumption of flights last Friday, saying the days of flight operations remain unchanged.

Windhoek to Harare is operated on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday, whereas the Windhoek to Victoria Falls route is operated on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Towards the end of June 2018, the High Court of Zimbabwe made an Ex Parte order for the attachment of Air Namibia property or aircraft in Zimbabwe without notifying the parties.

An attempt of attachment took place on October 5, 2018, which was successfully avoided by Air Namibia, specifically on the basis of the fact that the aircraft in terms of which the attachment was to take place did not belong to Air Namibia.

Air Namibia subsequently obtained an alternative legal counsel who arranged for the matter to be heard by the Supreme Court of Zimbabwe.

An application to this effect was heard on October 23, 2018 in which Air Namibia was granted an extension of time in which to file an appeal. Condonation was equally granted to Air Namibia, to file its opposing papers by the Supreme Court of Zimbabwe.
“The Supreme Court made the order with costs against the passengers who were denied boarding,” said Air Namibia spokesperson, Paul Nakawa.

“The order has the effect of staying (undoing) the previous Ex Parte order which facilitated the attachment of the Air Namibia aircraft.

“We are confident that this matter will be concluded soon and trust that Air Namibia can count on your continued support, as we continue to offer the most professional and pleasant experience for our passengers.”
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