Airline in talks over N$350m debt

Facing the seizure of its assets, Air Namibia is negotiating with the bankrupt Challenge Air SA to make payments in the millions of dollars.

12 March 2019 | Transport

Air Namibia says it is negotiating with Belgian aviation firm Challenge Air SA over the possible payment of over N$350 million for an aircraft it had leased in 1998.

The Munich Regional Appeal Court in July 2015 ruled on several payments Air Namibia had to make in respect of monies owed to Challenge Air, totalling, at today's exchange rate, in the region of N$350 million, with an added daily payment of US$1 335 in respect of unpaid maintenance.

“During recent weeks, Air Namibia has been in direct engagement with Challenge Air through their legally appointed and recognised European receiver to determine viable options to resolve the situation as rapidly and effectively as possible,” the Air Namibia board said in a statement.

The board said the airline was right when it refused to engage with local Challenge Air representative Wilhelm Shali.

“The Namibian courts have not officially recognised any local liquidator for Challenge Air and the question as to the validity of the arbitral award remains sub judice. Therefore, Air Namibia will not acknowledge, engage or negotiate with any Namibian individuals or companies purporting to be official representatives of Challenge Air in Namibia,” the board said.

It is unfortunate that certain individuals have chosen to create incorrect perceptions about the facts in this matter, thereby attempting to unduly influence Air Namibia for their personal gain, and to engage underhandedly to pre-empt the outcome before the Namibian High Court has pronounced itself on the matter.”

Challenge Air's lawyers, Clerens Legal Partners, which instructed Belgian attorney Anicet Baum to act on its behalf, warned Air Namibia's management that it would not be engaging any of the airline's legal representatives if Shali or law firm Sisa Namandje Incorporated were not part of the process.

“To be even more clear and explicit, at the risk of overly repeating ourselves, Mr Anicet Baum, sole challenger of Challenge Air SA, is formal that he nor any lawyer representing him as sole receiver, does not want to negotiate with Mr (Johan) Durnez who has been given power of attorney by Air Namibia and that negotiations have never started with Mr Durnez (sic),” Clerens Legal Partners said in a letter.

The lawyers warned Air Namibia that its refusal to engage Shali or Sisa Namandje Incorporated would see it “execute” (lay claim to monies and property).

“We want to make it very clear that, as already indicated and confirmed to you by our previous letters, all negotiations with respect to this matter must be conducted through Mr Wilhelm Shali and Sisa Namandje Incorporated who have full authority thereto.

“If you prefer not to negotiate under the aforementioned conditions, we will just continue to execute in Germany, Europe and the whole world if necessary, so as to enforce the rights of our client, Mr Baum, pursuant to the final and binding arbitral awards and court orders,” Clerens Legal Partners added.

Shali, has described the situation as unfortunate.

“Air Namibia is fully aware that the judgment in Munich is valid and is being executed. I do not understand why they are quiet as if it is business as usual, when even Challenge Air informs them that we have the mandate to resolve the issues,” Shali said.

Air Namibia had, according to him, been asked to amicably solve the matter.

“We are willing to come to the table, as we have always been. Let them come and we see ways and means to resolve the issues. Of course, if they choose not to engage in discussions then they are the ones responsible for the mess they are putting our national airline in; it's sad,” he said.





OGONE TLHAGE

Similar News

 

Removed equipment threatens airlines

1 day - 19 July 2019 | Transport

Airlines operating in Namibia and those flying over Namibian airspace are up in arms after the Namibia Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) withdrew all instrument approaches...

Giant load turns heads

2 days ago - 18 July 2019 | Transport

At an average speed of 25 kilometres per hour, a super-abnormal freight operation transporting a 175-tonne transformer from Johannesburg to a NamPower substation just outside...

Several airports unlicensed

1 week ago - 08 July 2019 | Transport

Several airports around the country under the management of the Namibia Airports Company (NAC) are operating without licences due to not meeting certain international requirements...

Air Nam's Frankfurt route not cancelled

1 week ago - 08 July 2019 | Transport

Namibia's national airline has dismissed reports that it's intercontinental flight to and from Frankfurt has been terminated.In a statement issued on Friday Air Namibia stated...

Air Nam Frankfurt schedule altered

2 weeks ago - 01 July 2019 | Transport

Air Namibia has announced a temporary schedule change to its Windhoek-Frankfurt route after one of their aircraft was damaged on Friday.The airline issued an apology...

Oompangela dhokuhupitha ehangano lyoAir Namibia

1 month - 14 June 2019 | Transport

Okomitiye yoKabinete yOmahangano gEpangelo otayi ulike ongundu yaatseyinawa, ndjoka tayi ka ulikwa kwiikwatelelwa komagwedhelepo opo ku tulwepo oompangela oompe dhopangeshefa dhoka tadhi ka hupitha ehangano...

Air Namibia rescue plan

1 month - 13 June 2019 | Transport

The Cabinet Committee on Public Enterprises is to appoint a consultancy with a “very specific terms of reference” to come up with a business model...

Westair shakes up aviation sector

1 month - 12 June 2019 | Transport

An announcement by privately owned Westair Aviation that it will start offering passenger flights from Windhoek to Oranjemund and Ondangwa could put further pressure on...

Air Namibia business model in spotlight

1 month - 11 June 2019 | Transport

The embattled Air Namibia has appointed consultants to come up with a more suitable business model that would allow it to break even in the...

Minister denies Westair connection

1 month - 11 June 2019 | Transport

Public enterprises minister Leon Jooste today said he has no interest in Westair Aviation as alleged in the local media. He also said denied that...

Latest News

Making employees feel at home...

1 day - 19 July 2019 | Business

Jonell Malan Human resource management is essentially the management of human resources (HR). It is a function in organisations designed to maximise employee performance in...

Fascinated by consumers

1 day - 19 July 2019 | Business

Evany van Wyk Rozanne van der Merwe comes across as being the epitome of female empowerment and friendliness. And this is exactly who she is....

No dazzling half-year for Namdeb

1 day - 19 July 2019 | Business

Jo-Maré DuddyNamdeb Holdings recorded its worst first half-year since 2016, with diamond production for the six months ended 30 June plummeting by nearly 22% compared...

Vulnerable and alone

1 day - 19 July 2019 | Social Issues

After an initial projection in 2008 that there would be 250 000 orphans and vulnerable children under the age of 15 by 2021, President Hage...

Zero cattle on offer at...

1 day - 19 July 2019 | Agriculture

The Oshana Regional Livestock Marketing Cooperative suspects that livestock prices have dropped so low because of the drought that farmers are no longer willing to...

Hope rekindled at Linus Shashipapo

1 day - 19 July 2019 | Education

Hope has been finally been rekindled that Linus Shashipapo Secondary School, which is currently in a sorry state, will be renovated.This comes after a tender...

Resilient and strong

1 day - 19 July 2019 | Business

Mariselle StofbergWith her tenacious attitude, collaborative nature and desire to always learn and draw from other people’s knowledge and experience, Leorine Waggie is clearly on...

Being unapologetically you

1 day - 19 July 2019 | Banking

Mariselle Stofberg Adriano Visagie went from playing in the dusty streets of Katutura to becoming a powerhouse in the entertainment industry and has created...

The great unwind and calls...

1 day - 19 July 2019 | Economics

Lazarus Shigwedha - Balance sheet recessions are the toughest to manage when they occur simultaneously with distressed debt conditions in the wider economy. During balance...

Load More