<![CDATA[GhanaFlights.info - Airline and Flight News Updates]]>Mon, 23 Oct 2017 20:45:17 -0100Weebly<![CDATA[Government seeks stronger aviation collaboration with Turkey]]>Mon, 23 Oct 2017 00:33:17 GMThttp://ghanaflights.info/1/post/2017/10/government-seeks-stronger-aviation-collaboration-with-turkey.html Source: thebftonline. com - The Aviation Ministry is seeking a deeper collaboration with its Turkish counterpart in the area of aviation training, as Ghana positions itself to be the hub of choice in the West African sub-region.
Ms. Cecilia A. Dapaah, the Aviation Minister said: “ Ghana and Turkey can collaborate in the area of training, knowing the capacity of Turkish Airlines and the training facilities you have in Istanbul.

“When your technical experts come for the up-coming African Air Show, we will have discussions with them; and if we have to sign an MoU on technical cooperation, we will do so,” she said.

Ms. Dapaah said this when the General Manager of Turkish Airlines, Ghana – Ferhat Yerli, paid a courtesy call on her to discuss the Istanbul-based airline’s support for the up-coming maiden African Air Show – scheduled for October 24-26, 2017 – and to announce its special Sales Festival for the Ghanaian market.

“They are here as an airline that is doing well. They have grown 75 percent and intend to grow their capacity to 80 percent in December. That is what we expect all businesses to do; to take advantage of the conducive atmosphere and expand their business.

“Ghana is the best place for investment, and you cannot be disappointed and you will not be disappointed because we have a pool of talent that you can tap into. We believe such businesses can help the economy grow,” she said.

On his part, Mr. Yerli said the airline has grown its capacity by 75 percent over the last decade, and intends to increase that capacity growth from 75 to 85 percent by December when it deploys a wide-bodied aircraft, an A330, on the Accra-Istanbul route.

He added that his outfit is open to support Ghana’s aviation sector growth through technical collaboration.

“We have just reduced our airfares in our Sales Festival, which is supposed to last for two months and make it possible for many people to travel,” he said.

He explained that under the airline’s two-month long promotion, passengers will enjoy discounted return-fares from Accra to major destinations such as Washington for US$999; Amsterdam, US$539; Dubai, US$549; London, US$639; and New York, US$999.

Under the promotion, passengers are to book by November 30, 2017 for travel before December 31, 2018.

There are 37 airlines operating in the country, with some other airlines undergoing certification to operate domestic, regional and international flights to and from Ghana. B&FT sources say there are also more applications pending.

The country’s aviation industry has been growing significantly over the past decade, except for a small patch in 2015 when growth was briefly truncated by the Ebola threat.

International passenger throughput has grown over the period as more measures are put in place by policymakers to strengthen the sector. Key among them is the ratification of about 10 conventions in 2015, which included the Cape Town Convention.

On the domestic front, abolition of the 17.5 percent tax on domestic air transport this year has led to a sharp increase in domestic passenger throughput.

Domestic passenger throughput from Accra to the four major domestic destinations in the country – Takoradi, Kumasi, Sunyani, Tamale – has increased significantly, data from the Ghana Airports Company shows.

Domestic passenger throughput for the first quarter of 2017 has increased by 33 percent over the same period last year; increasing from 88,793 in Q1 2016 to 118,159 as at Q1 2017.

The significant increase in passenger volumes, in a period that is usually characterised by low yield in the country’s domestic aviation sector, has been attributed to the surge in economic activity since the Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo-led government assumed power on the back of promises to cut some taxes it described as ‘nuisance’.

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<![CDATA[African Airshow takes off at Kotoka International Airport]]>Sun, 22 Oct 2017 00:37:24 GMThttp://ghanaflights.info/1/post/2017/10/african-airshow-takes-off-at-kotoka-international-airport.html Source: GNA - Under the patronage of the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, and the auspices of the Ministry of Aviation, the first Aerospace and Aviation Exhibition for West Africa is scheduled to take place at Kotoka International Airport from October 24 – 26, 2017.
Picture, airshow, Accra, African Airshow, ghana
African Airshow takes off at Kotoka International Airport
A statement signed by Madam Cecilia Abena Dapaah, the Minister of Aviation and copied to the Ghana News Agency said the event is expected to bring together major players within the African and Global Aviation Space with the view towards positioning the African Aviation Industry at the forefront of regional and global interests.

The statement said it would also provide an opportunity for manufacturers and service providers in the sector to explore and meet potential customers.
Highlights of the event are as follows: October 24, 2017- Conference and Exhibition starts, October 25, 2017-Official launch at 0900 hours by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, October 26, 2017, Visit by students from selected Senior High Schools to the exhibition.

The statement said the Conference Session would feature industry VIP’s with representation from Airports Council International (ACI), International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), International Air Transport Association (IATA), Africa Civil Aviation Commission (AFCAC) and Africa Airlines Association (AFRAA) among others.

It said currently, 126 Exhibitors and 300 African and International attendees have confirmed participation.

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<![CDATA[5 top guesthouses in Ghana to consider on a tight budget]]>Fri, 20 Oct 2017 01:38:19 GMThttp://ghanaflights.info/1/post/2017/10/5-top-guesthouses-in-ghana-to-consider-on-a-tight-budget.html Guesthouses, often synonymous with inexpensive and sometimes quite unfortunately less quality facilities. Generally, many believe that a guesthouse is the ‘’poor man;s’’ hotel. 
In the western world, this has proven to be very untrue with some very porsche and expensive guesthouses whose architecture and rates can compete with certain 4 and 5 star hotels elsewhere.

Ideally, one may choose a guesthouse because that is the only form of accommodation available or to save cost.
Although price has mostly proven to be the determining factor when it comes to the choice of guesthouses, we cannot downplay their importance. 

In Ghana, guesthouses have been often used as a substitute when travelers cannot afford a much bigger hotel or when there is no available accommodation in the area of interest. Anyway, just before you start condemning all guesthouses in Ghana as being bad, you need to see these.

Jumia Travel, Africa’s leading online travel website presents 5 top guesthouses in Ghana to consider when you are on a tight budget.

Royals Guest House, Kasoa - Central Region 

Royals guesthouse located in Kasoa, Ghana provides 24 hour electricity and a large parking space for all guests.The rooms here are very spacious with very comfortable beds. Each room is fitted with ensuite bathroom, telephone, wardrobe, air-conditioning/fan, flat screen television with cable tv services.

Bottled water can be made available at a surcharge. Toiletries are provided.This guesthouse doesn’t have a restaurant on site however a well stocked bar stocked with both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks from which guests can order is available here.. 

Royals Guesthouse is in close proximity with West Hill Mall and Kokrobite beach. Anytime you feel like spending sometime away from home in a comfortable, serene and affordable guesthouse around Kasoa, look no further.

@Home Boutique , Osu - Greater Accra Region 

A dual purpose business-friendly guesthouse in Osu, right at the centre of the fun city in Accra. It presents a neat and serene environment which boasts free WiFi services for all guests and banqueting facility for formal and informal events. All rooms are air conditioned, well-spaced and beautifully decorated.

They are all designed with en suite bathroom and fitted with an in-room safe, a wardrobe, flat-screen TV with satellite/cable service, telephone and a fridge. Breakfast, bottled water and toiletries are complimentary. 

The facility offers a 24 hrs front desk service, 24 hrs room service, an airport shuttle and luggage room. There is also a terrace and garden where guests can relax. The facility has a security guard and CCTV cameras. Parking on site and nearby is available. The Children's park and the Vanity nightclub are close to @ Home Boutique. 

The Labadi beach is also a 10 mins drive away. There are many entertainment and business centres along the Oxford street in Osu, which is also just a few minutes’ drive away. @Home is the most affordable, budget-friendly lodging you can find. Truly, none beats this.


Asantewaa Premier Guesthouse, Fumesua - Ashanti Region 

Asantewaa Premier Guesthouse in Kumasi is a accommodation facility with excellent customer service and a nice business centre. The guesthouse offers elegant rooms at affordable prices. 

Free WiFi is also available for all guests. Each Asantewaa Premier Guest house room is spacious, fitted with an air conditioner, a wardrobe, floor tiles, a TV with satellite reception, an armchair and designed with an en-suite bathroom.Complimentary breakfast is served daily. Local and continental dishes can be ordered at the onsite Asantewaa Premier Guest house restaurant, while a variety of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks are available at the well stocked bar. 

Asantewaa Premier features an event facility and a business center. Car rental, airport pickup and laundry services are provided for a surcharge. Onsite and nearby parking is available and the premises are guarded by trained security personnel. Asantewaa Premier Guesthouse is 5-minutes away from Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) and opposite Poku Pharma Industry.


Dzifanor’s Guest House , Akatsi - Volta Region 

Dzifanor's Guest House is situated in Akatsi, Ghana. This guest house boasts a 24-hour electricity and front desk. It is located in a serene environment where guests can have full relaxation. 

The rooms are air conditioned and have en suite bathroom. Each room is fitted with a flat screen TV except for the single room type. The double and executive room types are the only room types with a fridge. Breakfast is served daily and is free of charge. Local and continental meals are served at the on-site restaurant while a wide range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks can be ordered at the well-stocked bar.

Upon request 24-hour room service can be arranged. The Akatsi College of Education is 5-minutes drive from the hotel. The Akatsi hospital and Akatsi Taxi Rank are also a 5-minute walk from Dzifanor's Guest House.

Sundowner Lodge , Kanvilli - Northern Region 

Sundowner Lodge is situated in Tamale, Ghana. The hotel boasts 24-hour electricity and air-conditioning. Free WiFi is provided for all guests and parking on site is available at Sundowner Lodge Tamale. The lodge is located in a serene environment.

Each Sundowner Lodge room is well-spaced and fitted with en suite bathroom and a wardrobe. We provide facilities such as an air-conditioner, a refrigerator, a flat-screen television with cable TV services and a telephone in all rooms. Tea/ coffee is complimentary but bottled water can be ordered at a surcharge. Breakfast is served daily and is free of charge at Sundowner Lodge, Tamale. The hotel provides only local dishes. 

Alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks can be ordered at the well-stocked Sundowner Lodge bar. 24-Hour room service is also available upon request. Sundowner Lodge is 100-metres from the laurenda International School, 2-minute drive from town to Kamina Junction and in close proximity to the Stepping Stone Academy.

‘’Being in control of your finances is a great stress reliever’’. Never be pressured into paying more when you can pay less and enjoy more. Whenever you are travelling on a tight budget, consider a guesthouse. Some of them are amazing for the prices they come for.
Source: Jumia Travel

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<![CDATA[Kotoka Airport’s VVIP Lounge to be closed down]]>Mon, 12 Jun 2017 11:52:48 GMThttp://ghanaflights.info/1/post/2017/06/kotoka-airports-vvip-lounge-to-be-closed-down.html The VVIP and VIP Lounges at the Kotoka International Airport will be closed down on Monday, June 12, 2017.

A notice from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration said the shutdown is “until further notice.”
“In the meantime, special arrangements shall be put in place by the Protocol Bureau of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration for the Diplomatic Corps and Senior Government Officials only,” the notice stated.

No specific reason was given for the closure.

Below is the full General Notice:

TEMPORARY CLOSURE OF THE V.V.I.P LOUNGE

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration wishes to bring to the attention of the general public and affected Institutions that due to circumstances beyond its control, it has become necessary to shut down the V.V.I.P and V.I.P Lounges at the Kotoka International Airport, with very limited access, from Monday 12th June, 2017 until further notice.

In the meantime, special arrangements shall be put in place by the Protocol Bureau of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration for the Diplomatic Corps and Senior Government Officials only.

In this regard, all other passengers are advised to use the normal departure and arrival channels at the Kotoka International Airport.
This Notice supersedes General Notice with Reference No. DS/AF/3 dated 4th May, 2015.
* Source: starrfmonline. com 

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<![CDATA[Government to accelerate regional airports expansion – Aviation Minister]]>Mon, 08 May 2017 16:01:46 GMThttp://ghanaflights.info/1/post/2017/05/government-to-accelerate-regional-airports-expansion-aviation-minister.html Source: B&F Ghana - Government is keen on accelerating the expansion of other regional airports to ease the pressure on Kotoka and boost domestic economic activity, Aviation Minister, Cecilia Abena Dapaah, has said.

She explained to the Spanish ambassador to Ghana, Maria Jesus Alonso, who paid a courtesy call on her at her office in Accra, that the Tamale airport expansion project, in particular, is a “special” one.
“In fact, we have the land and we can expand it to any length that we think we need; we want to develop Tamale to be able to serve the Sahelian region. We also want to create warehouses there with cold stores to stock agricultural produce for export; they don’t have to travel all the way to the South before they export their produce,” she said.

She added that: “We also want to build fuel tank farms so that planes can go there and refuel; we don’t want them to come to Accra all the time.”

A US$100-million upgrading and expansion project has been ongoing at the Tamale airport, with former President Mahama inaugurating the first phase in August 2016.

The project includes the extension of the runway from 2,480 metres to about 3,940 metres and the installation of a lighting system for the airport to accommodate bigger aircraft.

Cecilia Dapaah went on to say that: “The connectivity within Ghana and the sub-region and Africa has not developed yet, so we will lead that to make sure we open up the country for business men, women, youth to travel and see the other regions and also to promote tourism.”

In line with this, the Aviation Ministry, she said, has held series of meetings with the Tourism Minister, in a bid to build helipads and landing sites for light aircraft, to make it easier for tourists to travel to tourist sites.

“When people travel for six hours from Spain and they land, they don’t have to travel by road for another five hours or eight hours to the hinterland to see tourist sites. So, we have everything laid out; we have decided to have a Standing Committee to promote some of these ideas and connect the airports. 

You should be able to fly from Takoradi to Tamale easily and you should be able to fly from Takoradi to Kumasi but as it stands now, everything emanates from Accra and it gets choked. We have a programme to expand and extend runways to make sure they receive bigger aircraft.”

Ambassador Maria Jesus Alonso, on her part, indicated that Spanish companies are in a position to provide navigation equipment to the country’s airports and they are keen on working with Ghana.

“There is a Spanish company which is equipped with surveillance systems at the airport and they are also talented with all the surveillance systems in air space related issues. We thought you should know about the company and in fact they are already working and are keen to work in other areas of aviation. We don’t know yet what your plans are for the Ministry but we will be very happy if you take into account that we have companies who are already into civil aviation.”

The Minister maintained that government intends to build more airports and as such will be relying on companies to provide value for money equipment.

However, she stressed that the foreign companies are expected to train Ghanaians in order to maintain the equipment when these companies depart.

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<![CDATA[Sale of construction materials at Kumasi airport, Manager accused]]>Tue, 25 Apr 2017 09:38:44 GMThttp://ghanaflights.info/1/post/2017/04/sale-of-construction-materials-at-kumasi-airport-manager-accused.html Source: mynewsgh. com - Heaps of sand meant for expansion works at the Kumasi airport are being carted and sold to private developers within the Kumasi Metropolis of the Ashanti region, mynewsgh.com investigations have uncovered.
Some aggrieved workers at airport are calling on the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) to look into the operational activities of the regional manager of the facility Mr. Kwadwo Abrafa Sarkodie who they accused of being neck deep in the alleged shady deals.

The staff say the regional manager and head of security have been engaging in act of selling trip of sand meant for expansion works on the stalled runway project started by the previous National Democratic Congress (NDC) government.

Mynewsgh.com inspected the stalled project site to ascertain claims by the workers and observed some changes that occurred with the visible heaps of sand nonexistent.

It was uncovered that the heaps of sand meant for fillings at the airport are usually conveyed in the night to locations of the private developers after prior arrangements in the day with each trip being sold for as much as GH¢700.

Armed with this information, our reporters posed as persons interested and met with [Kwame Moses] not real name one of the drivers and asked if it was possible to get five trips.

He confirmed that a double aisle load was GH¢700 but indicated that it could only be delivered in the night but when asked why, he claimed the airport manager directed that it is only under the cover of darkness will they be allowed to make deliveries.

“I am the only person who can speak to him if my money is ready”, he revealed.

When the Kumasi airport manager Mr. Kwadwo Abrafa Sarkodie was reached on phone to arrange an interview on the matter, he demanded to know the subject which was spelt clearly out to him.

He however demanded to know who the agitating workers and the driver believed to be the link man were but when told it was unethical to divulge the sources, he declined the interview.

“If you decline to name the sources I am also declining the interview because you have refused to obey me”, he stated.

The erstwhile government rehabilitated defective runway at the facility and installed airfield lights to help night operations and planned to expand it to assume international standard.

The first phase of the project was commissioned in 2003 at cost of $ 4.9 million with anticipation that second phase will be completed some months later.

Meanwhile the Aviation Minister, Cecilia Abena Dapaah announced to pay working visits to airports as government plans to make Kumasi and Tamale Airports international standards.

According to her, Aviation Ministry intend to revamp old airstrip to make air transport easier with introduction of a system called “air taxi” as fact finding exercise shows more people in the Ashanti and Brong Ahafo Regions travel by air.

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<![CDATA[Import duty on aircraft spare parts to be scrapped – GCAA]]>Wed, 19 Apr 2017 09:46:55 GMThttp://ghanaflights.info/1/post/2017/04/import-duty-on-aircraft-spare-parts-to-be-scrapped-gcaa.html Source: B&FT Ghana - The thebftonline.com has gathered that, the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) is working with government to eliminate import duty on aircraft parts and other ancillary aircraft equipment.

According to the GCAA, this when done it will come up to add to the government’s removal of VAT on domestic airline tickets which is expected to increase the patronage of domestic air travel in the country.
Speaking to the bftonline.com, Director-General of GCAA, Simon Allotey, said the move was part of efforts to make air travel within the country more affordable.

“The Civil Aviation Authority is also working collaboratively with the Ministry of Aviation in government to look at removing import duty on aircraft spares and duty on ancillary aircraft equipment, which when removed, it means there could be a reduction on aircraft fares which will lead to more people travelling by air.”

Mr. Allotey further noted that, high domestic air fares contributed largely to many people travelling by road, even though the airlines could not be blamed for the high cost of operation in our part of the world.

But with the removal of import duty on aircraft parts, ticket prices are expected to further fall after an up-coming meeting between the Aviation Minister, Ms. Cecilia Dapaah, and domestic airline operators to explain how airlines can also benefit from the removal of duty on imported parts—a major cost component for operators that has a bearing on the cost of airfares.

Mr. Eric Antwi, CEO, Starbow, told the B&FT in an earlier interview that: “The removal of the VAT will lead to a fall in airfares. When something is also done about the duty on spare parts, ticket prices will drop further.”

Passengers traveling by air between Accra and the four main domestic airports in the country--Kumasi, Sunyani, Tamale and Takoradi-- are paying 17.5 percent less, with a further drop in airfares expected in the coming months.

Accra-Kumasi one-way ticket, for instance, has dropped from about GH¢320 to about GH¢265 as at Wednesday April 5, 2017 on both Starbow and Africa World Airlines (AWA).

The drop-in airfares follows the announcement by the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, of the abolishing of the 17.5 percent VAT on domestic airfares in the 2017 budget passed by Parliament.

Parliament, passed the Value-Added Tax (Amendment) Bill, 2017 following the recommendation of the Finance Committee.

Government is expected to take a GH¢21.11million hit in relation to the abolishing of the VAT on domestic air transport.

But the Committee noted that: “…The removal of VAT on domestic air transport is expected to lead to an expansion in the domestic airline industry leading to greater generation of employment in the sector and also encourage more people, especially, the middle and lower classes to patronize domestic air transport services.”

The consumption tax’s imposition in July 2015 led to a steady decline in domestic passenger throughput; as more passengers opted to travel by road to major capitals in the country.

Domestic passenger throughput declined from 55,000 in December 2014 to 44,000 in December 2015. Latest figures from the Ghana Airports Company Limited (GACL) also show a further slump in domestic passenger throughput to 37,775.

The drop in passenger throughput has also meant less revenue for the airports operator--GACL—and the industry regulator, Ghana Civil Aviation Authority.

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<![CDATA[Truncated Accra-bound Starbow flight wasn’t in danger – CEO]]>Wed, 12 Apr 2017 09:49:21 GMThttp://ghanaflights.info/1/post/2017/04/truncated-accra-bound-starbow-flight-wasnt-in-danger-ceo.html Source: todaygh. com - Management of indigenous airline, Starbow, has refuted claims that one of its Accra-bound domestic flight S9103 returned to Kumasi because it endangered the lives of its passengers.

A Starbow flight S9103 en-route to Accra from Kumasi, had to return to Kumasi last Sunday due to bad weather conditions in the capital, Accra.
The captain decided to return to Kumasi as a safety precautionary measure and all the passengers were disembarked safely without any incident and the flight was not in any danger at all,” a statement from the company noted.

Reports indicate that, the airplane was unable to land in Accra as scheduled because of a storm, and hovered in the air for over an hour before returning to Kumasi.

According to the report, some passengers on the flight suddenly entered into a tumultuous prayer session after they were informed about the development and a subsequent sharp downward pitching of the aircraft.

Meanwhile, Starbow the statement signed by the Chief Executive Officer of Starbow, Mr. Hames Eric Antwi, explained that, “due to the change in weather at the destination, the captain entered a holding pattern together with other aircraft that were also due to land in Accra, hoping for conditions to subside.”

“When conditions did not improve, the captain opted to fly back to Kumasi so they could return to Accra when the conditions were better. Due to this, the captain decided to return to Kumasi as a safety precautionary measure and all the passengers were disembarked safely without any incident and the flight was not in any danger at all.”

The statement added that, the sudden change in weather is consistent with the changing of the seasons and cannot certainly be anticipated.

The company further apologized to its passengers for the incident.

“Starbow apologizes to its cherished guests, especially those who were in its flight S9103 on Sunday April 9, 2017, for any inconvenience this incident might have caused,” the statement added.

The report also indicated that, a Member of Parliament as well as a member of the Council of State were all on-board the aircraft.

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<![CDATA[Starbow flight held in the air for one and half hours lands in Kumasi]]>Mon, 10 Apr 2017 09:41:07 GMThttp://ghanaflights.info/1/post/2017/04/starbow-flight-held-in-the-air-for-one-and-half-hours-lands-in-kumasi.html Source: ultimatefmonline. com - Passengers who boarded a Starbow flight from Kumasi en-route to Accra on Sunday afternoon were only lucky to be returned to the Kumasi Airport after an hour and half of veering off flight path.

The airplane was unable to land in Accra as scheduled because of bad weather resulting from Saturday’s heavy rains in the national capital Accra.
A clergyman whose voice is heard praying in recordings taken from the plane during the traumatic period Head pastor of Promise Land Rev Evans Kyereh Mensah narrated the incident on Ultimate FM’s Brunch and Lunch with Naa Klodey Odonkor.

“Around 3:30pm we were asked on board. But in the middle of the journey we heard an announcement from the pilot that we were to brace ourselves and put our seat belts on because there were storms coming. Everybody was quiet when announcement came again that the flight was diverting to the north east so people started agitating whether we were going to Tamale or what.“

“Then all of a sudden the plane had a sharp descent then people became apprehensive. I shouted Jesus while others begun crying and screaming my family! My children!.”

“I started praying and shouting and taking control over the atmosphere but still the thing kept defending and people were screaming. At that time all of us knew we were coming to the ground but I still held on to the prayer. Others who were also Christians started praying. A woman held on to my waist and another person held on to my legs and we were all praying.“

“For about one and half hours we were held up in the storms. Later the pilot came to tell us he lost control and someone explained to us that they took us through Lome, Aphlao area looking for navigation and a place to land.”

“It was a matter of life and death. I could see some of them had held unto the seat, some had bowed down their heads, others had brought their children under them, and some were covering their children. I saw some white guys who had also bowed down their heads. I saw another lady two seats away also praying in tongues and asking Lord help us Lord help us I join my faith with the pastor’s faith Lord help us.”

“I saw another lawyer by me also praying, others were quiet, somebody had just fallen asleep and all that but I was just praying.”

“The cabin crew looked frustrated while they sat still some with heads bowed and muttering words. Someway somehow the pilot came out of his cockpit and said that he had found a place to land and so we had to return to Kumasi. But still I was in prayer and I said I wouldn’t give a foot hold to the enemy till we have landed.”

“But by then others were talking, others were chatting others were like wow! Thank you Jesus but I was still in prayer.”

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<![CDATA[Domestic airfares fall]]>Fri, 07 Apr 2017 10:22:12 GMThttp://ghanaflights.info/1/post/2017/04/domestic-airfares-fall.html Passengers traveling by air between Accra and the four main domestic airports in the country--Kumasi, Sunyani, Tamale and Takoradi-- are paying 17.5 percent less, with a further drop in airfares expected in the coming months.
Accra-Kumasi one-way ticket, for instance, has dropped from about GH¢320 to about GH¢265 as at Wednesday April 5, 2017 on both Starbow and Africa World Airlines (AWA).

Ticket prices are expected to further fall after an up-coming meeting between the Aviation Minister, Ms. Cecilia Dapaah, and domestic airline operators to explain how airlines can also benefit from the removal of duty on imported parts—a major cost component for operators that has a bearing on the cost of airfares.

Mr. Eric Antwi, CEO, Starbow, told the B&FT in an earlier interview that: “The removal of the VAT will lead to a fall in airfares. When something is also done about the duty on spare parts, ticket prices will drop further.”

The drop-in airfares follows the announcement by the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, of the abolishing of the 17.5 percent VAT on domestic airfares in the 2017 budget passed by Parliament.

Parliament, Last Friday, passed the Value-Added Tax (Amendment) Bill, 2017 following the recommendation of the Finance Committee.

Government is expected to take a GH¢21.11million hit in relation to the abolishing of the VAT on domestic air transport.

But the Committee noted that: “…The removal of VAT on domestic air transport is expected to lead to an expansion in the domestic airline industry leading to greater generation of employment in the sector and also encourage more people, especially, the middle and lower classes to patronize domestic air transport services.”

The consumption tax’s imposition in July 2015 led to a steady decline in domestic passenger throughput; as more passengers opted to travel by road to major capitals in the country.

Domestic passenger throughput declined from 55,000 in December 2014 to 44,000 in December 2015. Latest figures from the Ghana Airports Company Limited (GACL) also show a further slump in domestic passenger throughput to 37,775.

The drop in passenger throughput has also meant less revenue for the airports operator--GACL—and the industry regulator, Ghana Civil Aviation Authority

Kumasi Airport Development

In a related development, the Aviation Minister, Ms. Dapaah, has paid a working visit to the Kumasi Airport to familiarize herself with on-going works at the busiest domestic airport in the country, Kizito CUDJOE reports.

She noted that it will require some ‘few inputs’ to fully automate the facility in line with international standards.

The Minister disclosed that there will soon be a permanent waiting room for passengers and other visitors to the Airport, as well as one for domestic passengers at the Kotoka International Airport, in Accra.

She observed that all the installations carried out in 2015 the Kumasi Airport, including the Instrument Landing Systems (ILS), were functioning at their optimum capacity. 

She said it remains a key priority of government to open up the country to investors, tourists, and businesses. “We are hoping to shorten the time it takes to travel; with the development of a strong, affordable and competitive local domestic aviation sector,” she said.

The subject of encroachment of lands belonging to the Kumasi Airport, she explained that managers of the facility have put measures in place to get illegal occupants off GACL land.

She, however, failed to indicate whether the possible extension of the runway would affect some settlements close to the Airport.

The Aviation Minister also visited the Sunyani Airport to determine whether there will be the need to rehabilitate the runway among others.

The Minister was accompanied on the tour by the Managing Director of Ghana Airports, Mr. John Attafuah; Ashanti Regional Minister, Simon Osei Mensah; and the Deputy Regional Minister, Elizabeth Agyemang; and the new KMA boss, Osei Assibey Antwi.

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