By Chioma Onuegbu – Uyo
Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom state has expressed excitement over the successes the Ibom Airline has so far recorded since its launch last year and thanked God for the fulfilment of his dream and vision to invest in the aviation sector.
Emmanuel who spoke Tuesday at the Victor Attah International Airport, Uyo, after taken delivery of the 4th Aircraft to Ibom Air fleets, specially thanked God that the state was able to bring in the new Aircraft even in the midst of the gloomy economic situation globally, occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic.
He appreciated staff and management of Ibom Airline company for their dedication and commitment, and especially the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Captain Mfon Udom for being a strong partner in the fulfilment of his Ibom Airline dream.
His words, “I really want to thank God for today that this thing we started as a dream, is no more a dream, but a dream fulfilled. When I had that dream in 2016, I shared it with just one man, Captain Mfon Udom. He has been a partner in fulfilling this dream.
“Today is also a fulfilment of our bold declaration that we shall neither bend nor break. No matter the adversity we march on because God has promised us that we will increase more and more. And I believe that with what we have started and the prayers of our people we will continue to develop our state.
“And I use this opportunity to thank the Minister of Aviation, and all the agencies in the Aviation sector for their support. We plead that we still need more of that support and we will not disappoint you. We will keep to all the standards and the level of professionalism expected”
The governor while congratulating AkwaIbomites for the latest achievement in the aviation sector, solicited for the continued support and patronage of Ibom Airline passengers when domestic flights commence operations.
He assured Air travellers of Ibom Air continued provision of quality services stressing, “Our safety and hygiene regulations remains the best. And I have the pledge of the management and staff of Ibom Air that instead of going down on the standard, they will keep improving because there is always room for improvement.
“You don’t need to be afraid of any virus. No COVID-19 can attack you in this new Aircraft. The air efficiency that we have in it is super. So have nothing to fear. This is just the beginning, we are going to do a lot more for Akwa Ibom people.
“Let me use this opportunity to appeal to some people who may not share our vision of development. It is not everything about us that should be coloured or seen through the prism of politics. Please this is devoid of it completely.
“We are here to serve the people, to make a difference; we are here to make a statement. It is therefore to the glory of God Almighty that I today receive into the fleet of Ibom Air this brand new Aircraft that flew in from Canada to Lagos and from Lagos down to Akwa Ibom”
Earlier in his welcome remarks, Chairman of Ibom Airline and a former Military Administrator of Akwa Ibom state, Air Commodore Idongesit Nkanga (retd) disclosed that the company would take delivery of another Aircraft in few weeks time, and thanked the leadership of Nigeria Aviation industry for making it possible for the new Aircraft to come in even though commercial flights have not yet started.
“And I want to tell Akwa Ibom people to always be that this is one business that we all should be proud of, this is one undertaken by this government that even future generations will be proud of. I told you that this is going to be an Airline to beat in this whole sub-region”, Nkanga said.
In his brief goodwill message, the Chief Executive Officer of Ibom Airline, Captain Mfon Udom explained that the ceremony was a low-key due to the novel coronavirus challenge, adding, it has been a very difficult time for all of us, and for the country in general. We thank God that we are alive”
The new Aircraft Bombardier CRJ 900 was dedicated by the Prelate Emeritus, Prelate Sunday Mbang of the Methodist Church Nigeria, and Reverend (Dr) Uma Ukpai.