Air Namibia

Air Namibia board resigns …accuses shareholder of governance violations

Air Namibia board resigns …accuses shareholder of governance violations

Staff Writer The Air Namibia board resigned en masse on Wednesday after writing a scathing letter, accusing government of corporate governance violations in its dealing with the airline. First to hand in his resignation was Willy Mertens, who is reported to have resigned on Monday, after the airline on Friday had entered into a settlement agreement with Belgian company, Challenge Air whom it owed for a 1998 airplane lease agreement. Air Namibia board Chairperson, Escher Luanda, and Heritha Muyoba are reported to have tendered their resignations on Wednesday, a position confirmed by Public Enterprises Minister, Leon Jooste, with the status…
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Govt seeks legal opinion over Air Namibia deal

Govt seeks legal opinion over Air Namibia deal

Staff Writer Ministry of Public Enterprises has requested a legal opinion regarding Air Namibia’s last minute settlement agreement reached with Belgian company, Challenge Air, which is alleged to have been concluded without its approval. The government is considering the consequences of the agreement, which might require treasury to fund the multimillion dollar deal or provide guarantees. “I have requested a legal opinion and we are looking into what transpired last week. We will only be able to pronounce ourselves once this is concluded,” Public Enterprises minister, Leon Jooste told the Windhoek Observer. This is amid concern that the airline, which…
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Air Namibia faces uncertain future

Air Namibia faces uncertain future

Andrew Kathindi The future of Air Namibia is uncertain after government on Friday announced that it can no longer afford to bailout the national carrier despite it reaching another settlement agreement with Belgian company, Challenge Air. Finance Minister Iipumbu Shiimi on Friday restated that Air Namibia had significant debts that are unsustainable and that a business plan to save the state-owned enterprise would cost more than N$7 billion, funds which government does not have. "The government approached all airlines currently operating in Namibia as well as those that intend to operate in Namibia to assess if there would be any…
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Air Namibia announces Ondangwa, Walvis Bay flights

Air Namibia announces Ondangwa, Walvis Bay flights

Staff Writer Air Namibia has announced that it will operate flights between Ondangwa and Walvis Bay from the 4th of December 2020 to the 10th of January 2021. The flights according to the airline will be operated on Fridays and Sundays and serviced by Air Namibia’s Embraer Jet (ERJ) aircraft with 37 seating capacity, with travel time between the north and the coast expected to be 60 minutes. “This development opens new travel possibilities and opportunities, as the national airline continues to respond positively to the increasing demand of flying by air. This much-needed service will give our passengers a…
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Air Namibia suspends Joburg, Cape Town route

Air Namibia suspends Joburg, Cape Town route

Staff Writer Air Namibia has announced that it will be temporarily suspending flights to Cape Town and Johannesburg for a period of four weeks as aircraft that service the route will be undergoing scheduled heavy maintenance checks. “Air Namibia’s two (2) Embraer Jet (ERJ) aircraft will undergo scheduled heavy maintenance checks from 16 November 2020. These checks are expected to be completed within 4 weeks. Air Namibia’s ERJ fleet is used for servicing all domestic routes, as well as Cape Town and Johannesburg routes. Given the afore-stated maintenance activities, the airline will be operating 2 of the 4 aircraft only…
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Air Namibia restarts Joburg, Cape Town flights

Air Namibia restarts Joburg, Cape Town flights

Staff Writer Air Namibia has announced the launch of weekly flights to Johannesburg and Cape Town from 28 October 2020. The Windhoek – Johannesburg direct route will be operated on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, whereas two flights between Windhoek – Cape Town (direct & via Walvis Bay) will be operated on weekends, Fridays and Sundays. The times of operation from Windhoek, Namibia are as follows: Windhoek – Johannesburg SW723 Depart: 09:30 – Arrive: 11:15 Windhoek – Cape Town SW703 Depart: 07:25 – Arrive: 09:25 Windhoek – Cape Town (via WVB) SW715 Depart: 13:55 – Arrive: 17:15 Air Namibia’s Interim CEO,…
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Govt never consulted over Air Namibia salary cuts

Govt never consulted over Air Namibia salary cuts

Helena Johannes and Andrew Kathindi Government says it was never consulted by Air Namibia over its decision to cut workers’ salaries by 50 percent. Public Enterprises Minister, Leon Jooste, told the Windhoek Observer that the decision to cut employees’ salaries who have not been going to work, by 50 percent, came as a surprise to him as “the Ministry was not consulted on the matter. We were not consulted on any of this.” The Minister further noted that “Air Namibia has been receiving monthly subsidies specifically for paying salaries.” This revelation comes as the national flag carrier’s plan to cut…
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Air Namibia employees call for Mberirua’s axing

Air Namibia employees call for Mberirua’s axing

Andrew Kathindi and Helena Johannes Air Namibia employees are calling for the immediate removal of interim Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Theo Mberirua after their salaries were officially cut last week. This comes after the national airliner previously announced that it will cut, by 50 percent, salaries of all employees who have been unable to report for work due to a grounded fleet, incompliance with state of emergency regulations. Despite Air Namibia’s flight schedule resumption after the state of emergency lapsed, Ndapewa Amupanda, Chairperson of the Shop Stewards’ Committee at Air Namibia confirmed to the Windhoek Observer that a company memo…
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Unions rip into Air Namibia over salary cuts

Unions rip into Air Namibia over salary cuts

Andrew Kathindi Unions representing Air Namibia employees have hit back at plans by the airline’s management to cut salaries by 50 percent for workers that have not performed work due to its planes being grounded. According to letter in possession of the Windhoek Observer, Air Namibia Interim Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Theo Mberirua, said the salary cuts have been necessitated by the airlines pre-COVID-19 financial situation and worsened by COVID-19. This, Mberirua stated, has got to the point that the airline “cannot, at this stage, continue operations without cash flow with which to pay critical creditors.” “The financial losses incurred…
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Travel ban hits Air Namibia

Travel ban hits Air Namibia

Andrew Kathindi The grounding of Air Namibia flights amid the recently imposed national travel ban is set to hit the national carrier’s falling revenues, thus impact its turnaround strategy. Domestic travel was reintroduced in the country on 4 May following the initial State of Emergency proclamation by President Hage Geingob. Earlier this week however, following fears of rising cases of COVID-19, the President declared domestic travel restrictions. “As Air Namibia is involved in the business of transporting passengers and cargo, the temporary suspension of all domestic flights has a detrimental effect on the airline’s already difficult cash flow position, considering…
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