Skip to main content

Domestic airlines to fight for one goal

Chief Operating Officer of African World Airlines (AWA), Mr Apiigy Afenu, has underscored the need for domestic carriers to forge a united force to push more strongly for the resolution of the issues facing Ghana’s aviation sector.
Mr Afenu says the issues facing the sector must not be discussed in the public forum, as it creates unnecessary antagonism between government and airlines that condemn infrastructural challenges in the media.
He said “although there is petty jealousy [among domestic airlines], there are many things that should unite us.”
Ghana’s aviation industry faces many challenges. Key among them is high cost of aviation fuel, deplorable runways at key airports and high insurance levies on vehicles that go on the tarmac.
But Mr Afenu says “these myriad of issues affect us equally which if we are united, probably we can better have [them] resolved quickly.”
Speaking In an exclusive interview with, Mr Apiigy also expressed his displeasure at recent comments in reaction to a plan by government to start a national carrier.
Mr Afenu said although some of the concerns cited by these critics about government's plan for a domestic carrier are legitimate, there was the need for circumspection in establishing those concerns.
Recently, Alhaji Asuma Banda, Chairman and Founder of Antrak Group, issued threats of a legal suit against government if it goes ahead with plans to start a national carrier.
Alhaji Banda is of the view that a decision to start another national carrier - after the bitter experiences of Ghana Airways and Ghana International Arlines - may not be in the interest of the country.
Previously, Ghana Airways Limited, founded in 1958, had been the national airline with the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) as its hub. However, the airline - ridden with debt - ceased operations in 2004. Attempts were made to revive its fortunes, but to no avail; and in June 2005 the airline was liquidated.
In 2010 government signed a partnership agreement with Arik Air of Nigeria in an attempt to relaunch the Ghana Airways carrier, but the deal was still-born.
Government has indicated that it is committed to settling all outstanding issues with the last national carrier, Ghana International Airlines (GIA) - which suspended operations in May 2010 - before proceeding to set up a new one.
The Antrak Group boss, however, says such a plan could be detrimental to Ghana's already feebel, troubled economy.
But Mr Afenu believes government can bring in a technical partner to manage it in the form of a Private Public Partnership (PPP).
"Who says government must necessarily put money in it? Government can decide to have only a carried interest. You don’t get up and just say something without knowing the exact implications of what you are saying. Government doesn’t have put one dime in it”, he said in reaction Alhaji Banda's threats.
Also, Aviation Expert and former manager of the erstwhile Ghana Airways, Edward Nii Lantey-Quaye, has also described the threats by Alhaji Asuma Banda as an unnecessary move.
Mr Lantey-Quaye also believes due to the booming aviation industry, Ghana stands to benefit tremendously in owning a national carrier.
Although many airlines have indicated they may close shop due to challenges in the sector, the Africa World Airlines boss remained positive about the sector.
Mr Apiigy Afenu revealed that the Africa World Arlines will soon begin a third afternoon flight to Tamale.
Also, he said before the end of this year, the airline will begin flights to Lagos, Abuja and Freetown.
“Freetown flights will start on December 2nd”, he disclosed.
Africa World Airlines will also begin fights to Brazil next year to cash in on the World Cup tournament. Mr Afenu, however, explained that the World Cup in Brazil is not the only reason they are will be flying to that destination.
According to him, trading activities between Ghana and Brazil, especially imports from Brazil, makes the route a very viable one.


Popular posts from this blog

Deputy AG sues Facebooker over 'malicious' Ameri deal

The Deputy Attorney-General and Member of Parliament for Bolgatanga East, Mr Dominic Ayine has filed a defamation suit at an Accra High Court against a Facebook commentator, Evron Hughes.
In Mr Ayine’s statement of claim, sighted by Graphic Online, he accused Mr Hughes of defaming him in a post he authored and published on Facebook on December 21, 2015, titled “RE: AMERI TRANSACTION”.
According to the Deputy A-G, the “false and malicious” post has provoked “public disaffection” against him and exposed him to public ridicule and contempt.
Describing Mr Hughes as a “self-styled social media blogger and a social commentator”, Mr Ayine said the Facebook post had brought his hard-won reputation “as a respected politician, teacher and lawyer” into “hatred, ridicule, odium, discredit, contempt, opprobrium and reproach”.
The Deputy A-G said the “defamatory words” were authored with the sole intent to reduce him in the estimation of all right thinking Ghanaians, adding that he had received numerou…

Meet Ghanaian female shoemaker

The Saint Ozwald shoe brand

By: Fred Yaw SARPONG
The Daily Express

From her humble beginning in Sunyani in the Brong Ahafo region, a senior high female graduate from the Twene Amanfo Senior high in the Brong Ahafo Sunyani and a Ghanaian now boasts of being one of the most popular Made-in-Ghana shoe brands and has the most number of celebrity endorsements.
Sandra Ozwald, CEO of Saint Ozwald

After Sandrah Ozwald completed school in 2013, her parent couldn't have enough money to help her continue school so she planned to do something for herself by selling ice cream, groundnut cakes or food. Back at the senior high, Sandra used to make groundnut cakes, condensed toffees and ice cream to support herself since her mother couldn't provide all for her.

With 12 siblings and the only girl child (2nd born) among them, and whiles planning which of these to sell, Sandra attended a friend’s wedding and the grooms shoe looked so attractive to her.

According to her, the groom’s shoes were Ma…