Reporter: CHRISTIAN NWANGENE
The Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Emene, Enugu has receive first commercial flight. This is coming one year after the Airport runway was shut down for rehabilitation by the Federal Government.
Air Peace airline 5N-BUV from Lagos touched the tarmack at exactly 8:10am. One of the passengers on board the aircraft, Mr. Ali Odefa, who spoke with Radio Nigeria, described the sight during landing as beautiful.
”I’m just coming in from Lagos. Actually, this is the first flight from Lagos, 7:15am flight. It was a very beautiful flight, the weather was good, and even from the air, I could see the runway light, it was very beautiful and the landing was ok,” Odefa said excitedly.
Fielding questions from journalists, the President General, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, World Wide, Chief Nnia Nwodo and a former Minister of State for Power, Mr. Goddy Ogbaga, who were en-route Abuja on board the same Air Peace Airline, described the reopening of the airport for commercial flight operations as a big relief.
“A great sense of relief! In more than one year, I’ve had to travel to Asaba in order to catch a light to get out of Enugu, the toll on my car is inestimable. The tear and wear it has witnessed in ill maintained roads between here and Asaba, and between here and Owerri is a good memory to cast aside.
“The ease of doing business in the rest of our country has been made easily more manageable by what we are about to experience today.
“I’m grateful to the Federal Government for keeping to its promise to finish this rehabilitation within one year. My check-in this morning was very smooth, this is probably the first time I’ve never used any protocol to get my boarding pass, and I had no delays whatsoever, and they were very courteous. I’m hoping that the flight will be equally exciting,” Chief NWODO stated.
Former Minister of Power, Mr. Goddy Ogbaga said:
“I feel happy, the excitement is there, and we thank God this work is gradually getting to completion. From the look of things, is like solid work, which means, it is going to last and we are very happy and I commend the Federal Government for a job very well done.”
Radio Nigeria sighted the President, Christian Association of Nigeria, (CAN), South East Zone, and Founder, Peculiar Ministry, Bishop Goddy Okafor, and some officials of the Association from Enugu State to observe the official commencement of commercial flight operations at the airport.