By Adedapo Adesanya
The Akwa Ibom State Government has disclosed plans to expand the Ibom Air operations to other African countries to enhance the state’s economy.
This was disclosed by the state governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel, in a state-wide broadcast marking the 33rd anniversary of the state, in Uyo, noting that Ibom Air, which started operation with two aircrafts a year ago, now has a total of five aircraft in its fleet.
The airline is owned by the state government and commenced operations with its first commercial flight on June 7, 2019.
The governor said that plans were underway to expand the operations of the airline to cover West and East African sub-region.
He said, “In aviation development, we have achieved huge strides. In June last year, Ibom Air began its commercial flight operations with two aircraft.
“Today, a little over a year after it commenced operations, we have added three almost brand new aircraft, bringing the total fleet to five.
“Ibom Air has become a national sensation and a testimony to a vision grounded in strategic planning. Just last week, we expanded our route to cover Enugu.
“Plans are afoot to expand our routes to cover our West and East African sub-regions, such as Doula in Cameroons.
“Ibom Air has proved the cynics wrong and it is an achievement every Akwa Ibom indigene should be proud of.
“We are determined to become the aviation hub in the Gulf of Guinea, and our terminal building, on which work is ongoing, promises to be a model in this part of Africa. Work is also ongoing on our MRO facility,” Mr Emmanuel said.
The governor assured the Akwa Ibom people of improved infrastructural development to enhance their standard of living.
He said that the state government has built over 100 classroom blocks in the education sector to improve the standard of teaching and learning in public schools.
The Governor also said that the state government was optimistic that the Ibom Deep Seaport project would be completed before the end of his administration, adding that government was working hard to ensure cooperation with all the regulatory agencies in fulfilment of this desire.
He then commended President Muhammadu Buhari for approving the grant of licence for the Liberty Oil and Gas Free Trade Zone, spanning five local government areas in the state.
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