Department Of Transport Returned Unauthorized Flight Back To Zimbabwe

At Approximately 12h30 on Wednesday, 1 April a private charter craft landed at OR Tambo International Airport from Harare, Zimbabwe with one passenger on board.

Department Of Transport Returned Unauthorized Flight Back To Zimbabwe - SurgeZirc SA
OR Tambo / Photo File: Screengrab

Department of Transport calls full investigations into an incident that has happened at OR Tambo yesterday, regarding a flight from Harare which landed in South Africa without authorized papers.

At Approximately 12h30 on Wednesday, 1 April a private charter craft landed at OR Tambo International Airport from Harare, Zimbabwe with one passenger on board.

It is alleged that the flight was not cleared by the Department of Transport as required in terms of current protocol in force during the lockdown.

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The passenger and the crew were held at the airport as they awaiting to hear how to handle the flight.

“They were held at the airport as we were waiting to hear how to handle the flight,” said Transport Minister.

It was confirmed that a decision was made, subsequently, that the passenger; Italian national holding South African passport would not be allowed to enter the country.

According to the transport Ministry, the passenger refused to leave, but with the support of South African Police Service (SAPS) the flight left South African airspace at 19h50, return to Zimbabwe.

The Department, working closely with its aviation entities, is reviewing the application protocol to ensure only flight with necessary approval are allowed to enter South African airspace.

They added this requires seamless between Department of Transport, the Air Traffic Navigation Service (ATNS) and the Airport Company of South Africa (ACSA).

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The Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula has called for a full investigation into the incident and consequence management should the wrongdoing be found to have taken place.

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