THE first of the two Air Tanzania Company Limited (ATCL) planes purchased by the government landed at the Julius Nyerere International Airport (JNIA) today afternoon from Canada
The Bombardier Q400 NetGen landed at 12.15pm and received the customary salute of water being sprayed over the new airplane, which will be operating commercially for the first time in the country.
After receiving the water reception salute, the plane was taxied to the Ukonga Military Airwing for parking.
Speaking shortly after the arrival of the plane, the Permanent Secretary (PS) in the Ministry of Works, Transport and Communications, Dr Leonard Chamriho, said the second plane will arrive in a week's time.
"Once the second plane arrives, a date will be set for President John Magufuli to officially receive the plane," Dr Chamriho said.
In an earlier statement, Acting ATCL Managing Director, Mr Patrick Itule, noted that the 76-seater plane with four pilots from Canada left the country of origin two weeks ago, making stopovers in Reykjavik, Iceland, Southampton, Malta, Luxo and Addis Ababa in Ethiopia.
Mr Itule said the second plane is expected to start its flight to Tanzania from Canada on Friday and will begin operations within the country after all registration processes are completed by the Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority (TCAA).
“Since the plane will arrive after having already been registered in Canada, it will take us two or three days to be registered by TCAA and other legal process before the two planes can start operating in the country,” he explained.
He said that the first route of the new plane will start on September 27 to Mwanza. “There will be two types of travel class available in the new planes; the Economy - 70 passengers and Business - 6 passengers,” he explained.
Scheduled routes include Dodoma, Mwanza, Arusha, Mbeya, Kigoma, Tabora, Mpanda, Kilimanjaro, Mtwara, Zanzibar, Pemba, Bukoba and the Comoros. Mr Itule, however, stressed that the named routes and others in the future will only commence after a detailed feasibility study.
The arrival of the new planes from Canada will improve ATCL’s operations in the country.
Already the company has formed a task force that will oversee issues related to the company, including training to ensure the company’s entrance into competition with other carriers around the globe.
Dar skies notch a plus as first ‘Bombardier’ jets in amidst pomp Reviewed by on 11:43:00 PM Rating: