Poverty Hampering Domestic Air Travel in Uganda - CAA

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In short
Speaking in an interview with Uganda Radio Network, the CAA Director for Airports and Aviation Security, Engineer John Kagoro Tusubira, said while the potential for domestic air travel exists, many a Ugandan cannot afford domestic air tickets.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) says poverty is a major wet blanket on the growth and development of domestic air travel in Uganda.
 
Speaking in an interview with Uganda Radio Network, the CAA Director for Airports and Aviation Security, Engineer John Kagoro Tusubira, said while the potential for domestic air travel exists, many a Ugandan cannot afford domestic air tickets.
 
According to Tusubira, Uganda has high domestic air travel particularly in the tourism sector but because of poverty and low demand for local air travel the operational costs are too high and beyond the reach of many citizens.
 
Tusubira says a return air ticket to southwestern Uganda costs 500 dollars, equivalent to nearly two million shillings, adding that two destinations that are having relatively more air travellers are Arua and Soroti.
 
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The two-million figure can get one a two-way ticket to the United States and China. It can also pay fees for two terms in an elite school, despite being also the equivalent of what many ordinary workers earn per year.
 
The Uganda government data puts citizens living below poverty line or less than seven thousand shillings a day at 19.7 percent. The World Bank, on the other hand, puts the figure at over 33 percent.
 
Regionally, abject poverty is more intense in the North - at nearly 80 percent and in the East at over 70 percent.
 
On the state of airstrips in Uganda, Tusubira said significant progress has been made in improving the major ones like Arua, Gulu, Soroti, Nakasongola and Kasese.
 
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Uganda so far has just one airport in the real sense, serving both as the domestic and international airport. If completed, Hoima would become the second real airport.
 
In CAA's 20-year master plan to 2033, Arua, Gulu and Kasese aerodromes are expected to be upgraded into international airports.
 
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About the author

David Rupiny
In his own words, David Rupiny says, "I am literally a self-trained journalist with over 12 years of experience. Add the formative, student days then I can trace my journalism roots to 1988 when as a fresher in Ordinary Level I used to report for The Giraffe News at St Aloysius College Nyapea in northern Uganda.


In addition to URN for which I have worked for five years now, I have had stints at Radio Paidha, Radio Pacis, Nile FM and KFM. I have also contributed stories for The Crusader, The New Vision and The Monitor. I have also been a contributor for international news organisations like the BBC and Institute for War and Peace Reporting. I am also a local stringer for Radio Netherlands Worldwide.


I am also a media entrepreneur. I founded The West Niler newspaper and now runs Rainbow Media Corporation (Rainbow Radio 88.2 FM in Nebbi). My areas of interest are conflict and peacebuilding, business, climate change, health and children and young people, among others."