The Imo State Government yesterday launched airline services with the introduction of Imo Air operated by Dana Air services, according to a Daily Trust report.
The inaugural flight of the new flight services landed at Sam Mbakwe international airport in Owerri amidst pomp and pageantry.
Governor Owelle Rochas Okorocha led other senior government officials, traditional rulers and sons and daughters of Imo State to welcome the arrival of the inaugural flight which landed around noon.
Okorocha said the government ventured into airline business to drive traffic into Imo State and aid movement of passengers and goods into the state.
He disclosed that 200 Imo indigenes would be employed in the new airline services while sons and daughters of the state would enjoy 10 per cent rebate in ticket. The services commenced with Lagos-Owerri and Owerri- Abuja flights while more routes would be opened in due course.
He said, “We have no Air Operator Certificate and that is why we approached one of the leading airlines in Nigeria to manage this service for us. We believe that our partnership with Dana Air to operate Imo Air is a step in the right direction to open Imo State to the world”.
Accountable Manager of Dana Air, Mr Obi Mbanuzuo assured Imo government of efficient management of the airline. He said, “We are delighted about this partnership, and we have no doubt that Imo Air is in safe hands, as the choice of Dana Air to operate Imo Air, was an excellent and well thought-out decision by the proactive governor of Imo State. As you may be aware, Dana Air is the only domestic airline to have undergone an operational audit, conducted by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and its foreign partners- The Flight Safety Group.