By Wahiidah Namboowa
Fred Bamwesigye the acting director general for Uganda Civil Aviation Authority (UCAA) said, re-opening of Entebbe airport will be guided by the global health community and global aviation community. “All our efforts are geared towards putting in place the necessary health standards against Covid19. But still, we can not be ready alone. Other airports must be ready as well,” noted Bamwesigye.
The UCAA acting director general made the remarks while receiving Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) worth Sh8m donated by China Communication Construction Company (CCCC). He lauded the Chinese community for the donation, saying the equipment will go a long way in helping aviation staff while receiving Ugandans who are currently being repatriated and those hoping to return in the future.
While handing over the equipment, Zheng Biao the CCCC deputy general manager said, cargo and passenger handlers at Entebbe airport are at a higher risk of contracting Covid19 hence it’s prudent to have enough protective gear. “The virus does not respect borders. Around the world, with love and compassion, people have looked out for each other and pulled together as one,” stated Zheng before donating sanitizers, masks, soap, shields among others.
Meanwhile, Eng. Ayub Sooma the director airports and aviation security intimated that the first phase of expansion and upgrade of Entebbe airport, is at its climax. “Apart from the terminal building, other works in regard to the airport expansion and upgrade, are at 90% completion,” noted Eng. Sooma.
Vianney Luggya the UCAA public relations manager explained that the Sh150b bail-out earlier requested by UCAA from government, is meant to meet maintenance, operational and other associated costs for this whole financial year 2020/2021. “UCAA substantially finances recurrent and development expenditure using internally generated revenue, which is not available at the moment and yet we have to ensure smooth operations amidst the additional and urgent requirements occasioned by Covid19,” explained Luggya.