At exactly 13:05 hours, Uganda Airlines flight UR206 landed at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, having left Entebbe International Airport at exactly 12:12pm on Tuesday afternoon for its inaugural flight.
The flight which was preceded by a launch had at least 68 people of board, led by the minister of Works and Transport Eng. Monica Azuba Ntege, the Uganda Airlines CEO Ephraim Bagenda, the Technical Adviser Cornwell Muleya, members of the Uganda Airlines Board among other dignitaries.
During the launch, Hon. Azuba congratulated the airline and Ugandans at large on the Milestone, promising that government will support them in every possible way.
The CEO Mr. Bagenda said that as a commercial carrier, Uganda Airlines shall be flying both passengers and cargo within East Africa with the two Bombadier CRJ 900, and that an additional 2 CRJ will join the fleet next month and will be able to expand the route network to South Africa, DRC adding to the already existing network of Nairobi, Mombasa, Dar Es Salam, Mogadishu, Juba, Bujumbura and Kilimanjaro.
“Uganda Airlines will be served by a team of competent and highly trained multi nationals who have served in various capacities across the globe and will work tirelessly to make it a success. This however cannot be accomplished without your support and partnership. We are aware of the immense task that awaits us, our coming into the market which is already volatile doesn’t necessarily mean we will not be able to compete. We believe that Uganda Airlines presents another dimension to the travel industry and together with other key stakeholders will propel the aviation sector to greater heights” he said.
The Prime Minister Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda told the gathering that Uganda is strategically located, and that members of the East African nations will benefit from this.
“There has never been a better time to commence commercial flights than now. Our neighbors will now easily access the markets and their destinations” the Prime Minister said.
While in Kenya later, the CEO Bagenda thanked their Kenyan counterparts for the warm welcome.
“I want to take this opportunity to thank the people and the government of Kenya through the Hon Minister of Transport and Infrastructure for accepting Uganda Airlines to operate in your territory. With this route, we shall now be able to fly passengers to and from Kenya to the rest of the world through our hub in Entebbe” Mr. Bagenda.
He further appreciated HE President Yoweri Museveni, Hon Monica Azuba Minister of Transport and works, CAA Uganda, the board, management and staff of Uganda Airlines.