WHEN Captain Obet Mazinyi first landed a job in Hong Kong in 1991, he was the only Black African pilot in Hong Kong. Obet is currently a senior instructor and examiner/Check Captain with Cathay Pacific, on the Boeing 747-400ERF and Boeing 747-8.
Captain Obet has a huge and loyal following on Instagram. He takes his followers right into the Boeing 747 flight deck, where he regularly shares nuggets of knowledge about the much loved jumbo.
In this interview he shares a detailed and fascinating account of his flying story.
1. Give us your background.
I was born in Harare, Zimbabwe with my roots going all the way to Wedza district of Zimbabwe. Although I am from Zimbabwe, quite a large chunk of my education was in Zambia. In the mid 1960’s, my parents moved to Zambia.
I’ve been happily married to my lovely wife Persy for 29 years. My present situation is that I am a Senior instructor and examiner/Check Captain with Cathay Pacific airways on the Boeing 747-400ERF and Boeing 747-8.
I have been with Cathay Pacific now for close on 26 years but a total of 31 years with Cathay group airlines including Air Hong Kong. I am based in the beautiful and vibrant city of Hong Kong.
2. What made you to choose to learn flying and become a pilot?
At the age of seven I was sent to boarding school in Lusaka, Zambia’s capital city. It was this move that got me hooked on flying. Why you ask? Well, to get me to my boarding school we had to fly to Lusaka via Ndola.
It was my first time getting on an aeroplane, a Douglas DC-3. As I pulled myself forward to my seat (as the DC-3 is a tailwheel aircraft) I could see the pilots and that was it, I was going to be a pilot.
As if the flight itself was not enough, the school I went to in Lusaka was opposite, albeit some distance away, from Lusaka international airport; on clear days, in the playground, you could watch and hear aircraft taking off and landing. Aircraft in those days were loud, which was just such a beautiful sound! They were VC-10’s, Boeing 707’s, DC-8’s, DC-9’s and BAC 1-11 to name but a few. – Source: Zimbabwe Voice