Entebbe International Airport has registered an increase in the number of daily passengers with an average of 2,194 per day in February up from 1,868 in January 2021.
“The daily average of 2,194 in February 2021 is, therefore, the highest that the airport has recorded since the resumption of commercial passenger operations. While the figure of 2,194 is still low in comparison to the daily average of about 5,400 in 2019 prior to the advent of Covid-19, it’s certainly worth clapping about in light of the global situation in the Aviation industry,” the Ag. Director-General Uganda Civil Aviation Authority (UCAA), Mr Fred Bamwesigye, said while receiving 31500 masks from the management of Kapeeka Industrial Park at Entebbe Airport this week.
Mr Bamwesigye added that: “In specific terms, in relation to February 2021, Entebbe airport recorded 26904 arriving passengers, 31,084 departing passengers, 3448 in transit, 1738 metric tonnes of imports, and 3028 metric tonnes of exports. While in January 2021, the airport handled 24,095 arriving passengers, 29,409 departing passengers and 4,279 transit passengers.”
The 42,000 metric tonnes of cargo were handled at Entebbe international airport in 2019 compared to 58000 metric tonnes of cargo handled in 2020 in spite of Covid-19 pandemic. This is partly because cargo operations were sustained during the lockdown.
At the resumption of operations in October 2020, the daily average per month was about 1,600 in October 1,700 in November, and 1,900 in December 2020.
Mr Bamwesigye further noted that while some cases of forgery of Covid- 19 PCR test certificates were registered during the first two months after the resumption of flights, stringent measures to curb the vice were employed and this no longer happens.
“Safety of passengers and users of Airport facilities is important, especially now that the passenger figures are starting to steadily increase. The standard operating procedures in place include a requirement of Covid-19 PCR test obtained within 120 hours from the time of sample collection to boarding of aircraft leaving the country of origin and the same PCR negative Covid-19 test certificate apply on departure,” he said.
The Managing Director Kapeeka Industrial Park, Mr Zhang Hao, said: “We are trying and surviving in this country and also trying to help people at the gate of Uganda who are facing the problems directly and still working. We try helping to boost Uganda’s local production; therefore, these masks donated to UCAA are real products from Uganda. Local production is very important and we need these local factories. 31,500 facemasks donated for the first time but we are going to continue giving support to people who are in need.”