Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State has reiterated the commitment and determination of his administration to making the state-owned Airline, Ibom Air, and the entire aviation sector a world-class.
Gov Emmanuel spoke Wednesday while unveiling the new Bombardier CRJ900 aircraft with registration number 5N-BXO, and the fifth aircraft to Ibom Air fleet which arrived Lagos from Canada on August 1, 2020.
He thanked God that the state has continued to expand in its aviation business despite the economic downturn occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic ravaging the global economy.
Governor Emmanuel who noted that he inherited only one private Aircraft assured that he would ensure that Ibom Air acquired not less than nine commercial Aircraft before the expiration of his tenure in 2023.
His words, “We welcome the latest COVID-19 compliant Aircraft in our fleet with registration number 5N-BXO. On behalf of the government and people of Akwa Ibom State, including those in the Diaspora, we appreciate God and everyone who has contributed to making this possible and we look forward to many more.
“When I came into office as a Governor, I inherited just one private Aircraft, but I thank God that I will not leave the office with anything less than eight to nine commercial Aircraft so that our people can see progress.
” And I am sure the person that will come after me will not leave the office with less than twenty-five aircraft. I want to most sincerely register my appreciation to the management team of Ibom Air. They’ve actually made us proud.
“I really want to thank them for the commitment and the professionalism they have displayed to make Ibom Air an airline to beat. It is a State-owned airline to beat anytime, anywhere”.
The governor who announced that the first female pilot at Ibom Air, Captain Ruth Adebanwo, would be the pilot of the new aircraft, disclosed that Ibom Air has concluded plans to commence flight operation at the Enugu International Airport this month.
He also disclosed that he has been activated for the completion of the Maintenance Repairs and Overhaul facility at the Victor Attah International Airport and added that the new international terminal building currently under construction, is designed to meet the highest intelligence, smart standard, as well as match internationally, ranked terminals when completed.
In his remarks earlier, the Chairman of Ibom Airport Development Company Limited, and former military administrator of Akwa Ibom State, Air Commodore Idongesit Nkanga (retd) commended Governor Udom Emmanuel for his passion towards developing the aviation sector in the state.
Nkanga particularly applauded the governor for keeping to his promise of increasing the Ibom Air fleet, noting that the effort has contributed immensely to the expansion of the Airline’s flight routes.
“Ibom Airline has already operated the Calabar route and will operate the Enugu route from September 14, 2020, as Akanu Ibiam International Airport has resumed flight operations.
“And we have other things coming up at this airport; the MRO, we still have the Cargo coming up, and we have the Ibom International Terminal under construction. How else can one define progress, how else would you define governance more than what we are witnessing?” Nkanga asserted.