By Timo Shihepo
WINDHOEK–THE suspension of Air Namibia flights between Windhoek and Harare since October 3 was a result of a scheduled maintenance being carried on the aircraft which plies the route, the airline said this week.
All passengers booked during that period had to be rerouted to travel via Johannesburg.
Air Namibia says the normal service is expected to resume on October 15.
Paul Nakawa, Air Namibia’s Manager for Corporate Communications said: “The aircraft used on the route to Harare is undergoing a scheduled maintenance check which takes 14 days, and we have had to unfortunately cancel flights for the days indicated and redirect passengers via Johannesburg.
“Other options considered would have been to operate on alternate days but the inconvenience to passengers would have been too much, as most passengers would reach their destinations the following day.
“The arrangement put in place also inconveniences passengers because they have to go via Johannesburg, but at least they would be reaching their destination same day. However, we have communicated to them and extended our sincere apology in this regard.”
Until the service is resumed, Air Namibia passengers will fly from Windhoek to Johannesburg, and then connect on their partner airlines, primarily South African Airways on the sector Johannesburg to Harare.
Air Namibia operates four flights per week to Harare on Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Nakawa said effective October 30, 2016, they will increase the number of flights to five per week.
Air Namibia operates into two airports in Zimbabwe – four flights per week into Harare and also four flights per week into Victoria Falls.
“The Victoria Falls operation is not affected by the suspension and all is well,” said Nakawa. Apart from adding another flight to Harare, he said also starting October 30 Air Namibia would be adding two more destinations to its route network – Gaborone and Durban.