February 03, (THEWILL) – Akwa Ibom State-owned airline, Ibom Air, is set to commence regional flights to seven African countries in a move to expand its operations by April.
The Manager, Communication and Marketing of Ibom Air, Mrs Anie Essienette, disclosed this during a media chat with members of the correspondents chapel of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Akwa Ibom State Council, in Uyo.
Essienette said the African countries in the planned regional flight include Liberia, Senegal, Gabon, Ghana, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire and Gambia.
“Already, we have an invite to fly in the Gambia but we will commence regional operations in the next two months.
“Ibom Air started with 3 Aircraft but in the course of our operations, additional 2 Aircraft were acquired. When demand for our services was higher, we requested for 10 more aircraft,” Essienette stated.
According to her, while waiting for the aircraft, 2 new Airbuses were leased from Egyptian Airlines as Ibom Air Pilots were trained pending the arrival of the ones ordered.
“Seven Aircraft have been booked for the international operations. They will be throughout 2023. As we speak, some experts have gone to inspect it to ensure that the Aircraft is built to our specifications.
“Before the end of 2023, Our own Aircraft will be delivered but the Airbuses will be supplied in tranches,” she explained.
Essienette debunked insinuations that the Airline is owned by an individual, adding that the company is an investment of the Akwa Ibom State Government.
She explained that Ibom Air is financially sound with the capacity to outlive every administration in the state.
“We are at the point of tidying up the agreement with Gambia Government so that we can commence flight operations there.
“In 2023, we have plans to ply new routes, will not be up to two months to commence the African regional operations,” she stressed.