Air Botswana (BP, Gaborone) has been forced to delay flights and temporarily cancel some of its routes due to certification delays with the carrier's first of two E170s, Botswana's Sunday Standard has reported.

Air Botswana's fleet currently consists of a single ATR42-500 and two ATR72-600s. The first of two ex-Saudi Aramco Aviation (Dammam) E170s was delivered to Gaborone on December 31, 2018, while the other is still stored at Toronto Pearson.

Transport Minister, Dorcas Makgato explained in the parliament last week that the aircraft is still grounded at Gaborone's Sir Seretse Khama International airport because of a prolonged certification process between the Civil Aviation Authority of Botswana, Air Botswana, and the government.

Makgato admitted that there have been issues in planning the fleet induction as the CAAB had to get assistance from a third country with the certification. She said she was hoping that "in the next two weeks, we should finish this process of certification so that we can start flying them."

With the additional aircraft in its fleet, Air Botswana had announced new routes from Francistown to Kasane and Maun, from Gaborone to Harare Int'l, and from Kasane to Johannesburg O.R. Tambo due to start at the beginning of April. According to ch-aviation analysis of the carrier's schedule data, it has now postponed its Kasane-Johannesburg route until July 18.

With its ATR42-500 currently parked in Gaborone since March 31, Air Botswana currently operates all of its scheduled flights with just the two ATR72-600s causing flight delays as routes such as Gaborone-Cape Town were scheduled to fly with the faster jets.