Tuesday, 21 July 2020

With Ibom Air, Cross River will be better-off —Donald Duke

Donald Duke donned in dark blue attire at the Margaret Ekpo International Airport yesterday (credit: Daniel Agbor)
21 July 2020 

There is certainty that the commencement of flight operations from Calabar the Cross River state capital by Ibom Air will be a plus to the state especially in terms of economic impacts NEGROIDHAVEN can say authoritatively. 

This development about the airliner, Ibom Air, was projected by a former governor of Cross River, Donald Duke, yesterday immediately he alighted from the aircraft after her maiden flight schedule at the Margaret Ekpo International Airport.

According to Duke, Ibom Air's flight activities in the state will add commercial value and strengthen relationship ties between the duo of Akwa Ibom and Cross River states. While describing the service of the air liner as excellent, Duke further observed that Ibom Air will impact the tourism industry in the state so much so that the state will live it destination status. 

His words, 'I'm assured that with them coming in, our state would be better-off, commercial life will be better off, and I also believe that it would help further the relationship between the two states. 

'Unfortunately, until lately, it's only being one flight coming in and out of Calabar. So, this adds to it; this adds more commerce to the city where people can go in and come out more frequently. Then there are more visitors. 

'So, the hospitality industry will better for it because our people will come in a lot more. And overall, it becomes a destination. You are not a destination if I can't get to you. So, if people can come in here and leave at will, then you are a destination.'

While the former public officer employed the opportunity to encourage Nigerians indigenous to and resident in the state to patronise the air liner, he charged the management to maintain the very high industry standards it has created already. 

His words, 'Ibom is noted for living up to industry standards, it leaves on time, and they do things the right way, and even though it's new in the industry, they have kept very very high standards; I want to encourage them to maintain those standards.

'I also want to encourage our people to patronise the flight... You find our local dialect on the aircraft. There's some nostalgic feeling to it.'

According to Annie Essien-Ette the Group Manager Marketing for Ibom Air, while the air liner has an expansion plan nation wide, Ibom 'wants to position herself as a regional air line of choice for people traveling in Nigeria that require safety, reliability and comfort'; continuing Essien-Ette added '...I will tell you that our paramount aim for now is to give Nigerian travelers and everybody traveling within the Nigerian air space a different experience: our experience is schedule reliability, on time departure and superior services... We want them to break away from travel delays and tardy services'.   

Monday 20th July witnessed the commencement of flight operations by Ibom Air from Calabar. Already she is plying the Lagos, Abuja and Uyo routes with four aircrafts. 

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