Ethiopian Airlines says it has airlifted over 4,500 passengers from Kaduna International Airport since it commenced flight operations from the airport on March 8.
Firiehiwot Mekonnen, the airline’s Traffic and Sales Manager, told the News Agency of Nigeria on Wednesday in Abuja that it had so far operated 28 flights from the airport.
“We have airlifted more than 4,500 passengers; we also operated 28 flights from March 8 to April 4 and our experience so far is good.
“Ethiopian Airlines, having a vision of being the leading aviation group, is working hard to have more than 120 destinations as one of the vision 2025 goals,” she said.
Mrs. Mekonnen described as encouraging the level of work so far done on the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja and expressed optimism that the airport would be reopened on April 19.
She, however, urged the contractor to maintain the high pace of work on the runway and ensure that the deadline was met.
“We have not seen the runway yet but from the report we are getting we think the government will meet the deadline,” she said.
Minister of State, Aviation, Hadi Sirika, had on March 30, disclosed that over 50 international flights had been operated from Kaduna airport with about 4,000 international passengers in three weeks.
He added that about 73,000 domestic passengers had been airlifted with about 1,119 aircraft movements for domestic operations.
Ethiopian Airline is the only foreign airline operating from Kaduna, while two Nigerian airlines, Arik and Medview, also operate international flights from the airport.
As at March 29, Arik had airlifted about 165 international passengers with 11 aircraft movements for both arrivals and departures.
The Federal Government shut Abuja airport on March 8 for six weeks to carry out major repairs on its 3.6 km runway.
The rehabilitation work has reached 75 per cent completion two weeks to the reopening of the airport, according to a tweet by the minister on Wednesday.