Passengers from the north-west can now get regular international flights from the Kaduna international airport without travelling to Abuja.
Nasir el-Rufai, governor of Kaduna state, launched the Kaduna to Addis Ababa flights on Tuesday, saying regular international flights and an inland container terminal would help Kaduna economy overcome the disadvantage of not being close to a seaport.
El-Rufai expressed gratitude to all the stakeholders who made it possible, saying the federal government trusted the state to host flights while Abuja airport was closed.
He said Ethiopian Airlines demonstrated confidence and solidarity by agreeing to use Kaduna during the period.
The governor promised that the state government would support the airline to make the flights successful.
To show support, el-Rufai led a team of state officials to board the inaugural flight.”The Kaduna state government welcomes with delight the commencement today, August 1, 2017, of regular international flights from the Kaduna international airport,” the governor said in a statement.
“The Kaduna state government welcomes with delight the commencement today, August 1, 2017, of regular international flights from the Kaduna international airport,” the governor said in a statement.
“The flight of Ethiopian Airlines from Kaduna to Addis Ababa today marks another step in the steady insertion of Kaduna into the global economy. With this direct flight from Kaduna, and the imminent start of operations at the inland container terminal, Kaduna is being upgraded to a port city despite its considerable distance from the nearest ocean.
“Kaduna state has within two years successfully reversed the fortunes of the Kaduna airport which had for too long punched below its weight, both in terms of facilities and flight availability.
“We thank the federal government for supporting Kaduna airport to move closer to its potentials. The federal and state governments made investments to ready the Kaduna airport to serve as an alternative destination during the six-week closure of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport.
“Regular flights from Kaduna offer passengers from across the north-west zone a nearer alternative to Abuja.
“The state government will continue to engage aviation stakeholders to ensure that more local and international flights come to Kaduna.”