The Air Force of Zimbabwe is the aviation wing of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces. It's current commander is Air Marshal Perence Shiri. The Air Force has two major bases in Zimbabwe; Manyame Air Base in Harare and Thornhill Air Base in Gweru. It also has Field Air Force Base, which is home to air defence and regimental training.

Functions of the Commander Air Force of Zimbabwe (Comd AFZ)

The Commander of AFZ is a member of the Defence Policy Council. His/Her responsibilities include the following:

  • Defending Zimbabwe's Airspace.
  • providing an effective counter strike force.
  • Providing close air support to ground forces.
  • Supporting civil powers to maintain law and order.
  • Providing search and rescue and casualty evacuations.
  • Providing VIP and VVIP transport.
  • Performing ceremonial fly-pasts.


In 1939 it started all as an Air Unit, later becoming the South Rhodesian Air Force. In the Southern Rhodesian Air Force, serials SR1 - SR139 were used. In 1953 Rhodesia and Nyasaland formed a federation and in 1954 the Air Force was named Rhodesian Air Force, shortly after that to be renamed to Royal Rhodesian Air Force. This meant that serials all started with RRAF during that period. [1]

In 1980 the Air force of Zimbabwe (AFZ) was formed in 1980 after the integration of the three belligerent forces, The Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army ( ZANLA), and the Zimbabwe People's Revolutionary Army, ( ZIPRA), on one side and the Rhodesian Air Force on the other.[2]


  1. Air Force of Zimbabwe, Scamble - Dutch Aviation Society, Published: Unknown , Retrieved: 14 Nov 2017
  2. AIR FORCE OF ZIMBABWE, Ministry of Defence, Published: Unknown , Retrieved:15 November 2015