President Emmerson Mnangagwa appointed former finance minister Patrick “Biniman” Chinamasa as the new Air Zimbabwe chairperson on Monday, 10 June 2019.
Chinamasa was initially sidelined from Mnangagwa’s cabinet after Zimbabwe’s 2018 elections in favour of Mthuli Ncube who was appointed finance minister.
Before his appointment to the Air Zimbabwe board, Chinamasa was based at the Zanu PF headquarters in his capacity as the Secretary for Finance.
PovoNews.com previously reported that Air Zimbabwe’s only working plane a Boeing 767 plane caught fire mid-air during a flight from OR Tambo airport on April 28.
The state-owned airline has over US$387 million in debts which the government intends to take over in a restructuring effort.
In 2012, Air Zimbabwe was removed from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and currently owes IATA US$4,2 million.
Chinamasa has served the Zimbabwe government in various posts including deputy Agriculture Minister, Attorney General, Minister of Justice, Speaker of Parliament, Ministry of Cyber Security and Minister of Finance.
The University of London trained lawyer became a social media sensation after officially opening a garbage bin on 19 June 2018 in Rusape even going to the extent of cutting the ribbons.
As acting Finance minister in 2009 Chinamasa is credited with introducing the multi-currency regime that ended Zimbabwe’s record-breaking hyperinflation two weeks before the formation of the inclusive Government.
The previous Air Zimbabwe board led by Professor Chipo Dyanda was dissolved by the then Minister of Transport, Joram Gumbo in August 2008 while Grant Thornton Chartered Accountants were appointed as caretaker administrators.
In a statement, Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet Misheck Sibanda yesterday said Chinamasa’s appointment was with immediate effect.
Last week Thursday Air Zimbabwe announced that its only operation aircraft, a Boeing 767 is out of service from June 6 to 19 for a mandatory maintenance check.
Air Zimbabwe recently took delivery of an Embraer ERJ145 which is expected to ease pressure on the Boeing 767 as soon as registration formalities are completed.
Patrick Chinamasa short-biography
- Born 25 January 1947 in Nyanga, Zimbabwe (72 years)
- BA Law (University of London, 1971)
- Diploma in Law (University of Zimbabwe)
- Married to Monica Chinamasa and Chiedza Faith Velem
- Former deputy minister of Agriculture
- Former Attorney General
- Former Minister: Finance, Justice, Cyber Security
- Former Speaker of Zimbabwe’s Parliament
- Lost Makoni Central MP election in 2008
- Appointed to the Senate in 2008