Commercial flight operations commenced at the Bayelsa State International Airport, yesterday, as Governor Douye Diri, National Assembly Caucus members arrived the state through a United Nigeria Airline (UNA) aircraft at 3:45 p.m.
The aircraft, which took off from the Murtala Mohammed Airport 2 (MMA2) in Lagos at 3:00 p.m., also had on board Chairman of the airline, Chief Obiora Okonkwo, Tokyo Olympics wrestling Silver medalist, Blessing Oborududu, King Alfred Diete-Spiff, Boladei Igali, some members of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly and commissioners, among others.
Diri, who addressed jubilant Bayelsa people, who had thronged the airport to witness the historic event, said the full commercial flight would commence in two weeks based on available bookings
In a statement issued by his Chief Press Secretary (CPS), Daniel Alabrah, the governor noted that commencement of commercial flight signaled economic development of the state by bringing Bayelsa to the world and the world to Bayelsa.
“This event is the culmination of the aspirations birthed by the late former governor, Chief Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, which was eventually built by my predecessor, Seriake Dickson, and realised under my administration. This is a demonstration that teamwork truly works.
“I am happy that the pilot of the United Nigeria Airline said our runway is one of the best in the country. It is our determination to make Bayelsa truly the Glory of All Lands and we are making our state a construction site,” he said.
Diri also expressed gratitude to his deputy, Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, and his team who, he said, worked very hard to actualise the project.
Speaking, representative of Bayelsa Central Senatorial District, Senator Moses Cleopas, who congratulated Diri and Bayelsa people on the feat, commended him (Diri) for his visionary leadership.
On their part, Speaker of the House of Assembly, Abraham Ingobere, Chairman of the state Traditional Rulers Council and Amanyanabo of Twon-Brass, King Alfred Diete-Spiff, and Okonkwo said the airport would open economic opportunities and place Bayelsa on the world stage.
They urged Bayelsa people, particularly the youths, to take advantage of the opportunities the airport would bring to empower themselves by exploring businesses around the facility.