Latest reports from Africa Confidential

Latest reports from Africa Confidential

Zimbabwe. National carrier under new management and set for privatisation.

UK newspaper The Sun called him "The Maniac in the mink", The Guardian headlined it's profile of him "Ever nastier Nick". The Palace-cum-mausoleum he has built for himself in East Sussex is described as the most expensive private house built in England in a century. In 1968 he was imprisoned for paying a gang to attack a business associate. And in 2002 he was ordered to pay millions in damages to the dependants of a business rival in whose killing he was implicated.

Why is it that it comes as no surprise that self-made billionaire Nicholas van Hoogstraten also has substantial business clout in Zimbabwe, largely due to his friendship with Robert Mugabe, whom he calls a true "business gentleman"?

Now Zimbabwe’s state-owned national airline, Air Zimbabwe, has approached the notorious British tycoon for cash to help revive its operations.

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