HomeNewsPassengers left stranded as AirZim plane develops technical fault

Passengers left stranded as AirZim plane develops technical fault

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SEVERAL passengers booked for the Bulawayo-Harare flight were yesterday stranded for three hours at the Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo International Airport after an Air Zimbabwe (AirZim) plane reportedly developed a technical problem shortly after take-off at Harare International Airport and had to turn back in mid-air to make an emergency landing.

RICHARD MUPONDE
SENIOR REPORTER

The passengers were supposed to board the traditional Boeing 737 plane at 8:15am from Bulawayo, but were forced to wait for three hours until an MA60 plane arrived from Harare, instead of the Boeing to take them to the capital.

Although AirZim spokesperson Shingi Taruvinga-Dliwayo was unreachable for comment, Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe spokesperson Anna-Julia Hungwe confirmed the incident.

“I don’t know the reason. I just heard so, but not officially. I will only get the information from inspectors. The best way is to send me an email of your enquiry so that I forward it to AirZim for answers,” said Hungwe.

However, a source who flew from Bulawayo to Harare told our sister paper Southern Eye that the passengers were transferred to the MA60 plane at around 10:30am.

“We then left Bulawayo at around 11am and arrived here in Harare at about midday. We heard that the plane made a mid-air turn back shortly after take-off and landed again at Harare Internatonal Airport. Passengers were then transferred from the plane to a waiting MA60 which came to collect us in Bulawayo,” said the passenger.

At the end of April, President Robert Mugabe, who was aboard an AirZim Boeing, failed to land at the Harare International Airport due to bad weather on his return home from Italy where he had witnessed the canonisation of Pope John XXIII and Pope John Paul II who were declared saints of the Roman Catholic Church by Pope Francis 1.

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