Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

Former CEO sues Air Zimbabwe

By Daniel Nemukuyu

Former Air Zimbabwe chief executive officer Captain Ripton Muzenda has taken the airline to the High Court claiming outstanding salaries and benefits amounting to $42 801.

Air Zimbabwe chief executive officer (CEO), Ripton Muzenda (left)
Air Zimbabwe chief executive officer (CEO), Ripton Muzenda (left)

Cpt Muzenda was last year fired by the Professor Chipo Dyanda-led Air Zimbabwe board on allegations of disregarding a directive to implement a staff rationalisation exercise that was designed to save the firm up to $2,4 million.

When the contract was terminated, the parties agreed on a package, but Air Zimbabwe has failed to meet its obligations. In the summons filed at the High Court on Monday by Kantor & Immerman law firm, the former airline boss is claiming $42 801,45 plus interest. He is also seeking an order for costs.

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During his employment with Air Zimbabwe, Cpt Muzenda earned a gross monthly salary of $9 178,10. On October 20, 2017, Cpt Muzenda and the airline entered a written agreement to mutually terminate the employment contract.

In terms of clause 2 of the agreement, Cpt Muzenda was awarded the following package: 18 months’ salary ($13 767,15), three months’ salary ($27 534,30) plus pro-rated October 2017 salary and benefits up to October 6 2017 ($1 500).

Cpt Muzenda said he has unsuccessfully sought to recover the outstanding money from Air Zimbabwe since termination of the contract.

“The defendant has failed to honour its obligation to pay the terminal package as set out above,” reads the plaintiff’s declaration. “The defendant is, therefore, indebted to the plaintiff in respect of the same.

“Despite demand and the defendant acknowledging indebtedness in its correspondence with plaintiff, defendant has failed, refused and or neglected to pay the sum of US$42 801,45.”

Cpt Muzenda took over the reins at Air Zimbabwe in August 2016 and ran the firm for just over 15 months. He had taken over from Mr Edmund Makona, who was acting CEO since 2013.

Mr Makona had taken over from Mr Innocent Mavhunga, who, in turn, had replaced Dr Peter Chikumba, whose contract was not renewed in 2011. The Herald