As far as pitiable national airlines go, dead Uganda Airlines has to be up there with the worst of them.
But its struggling sister Kenya Airways Ltd is plotting to make a comeback adding seven routes in Uganda and the region in the next five years.
Uganda Development Corporation (UDC), an institution charged with reinstating the flag carrier of Uganda fumbles, KQ boss Willem Hondius has already formulated plans to dominate the Entebbe skyline using Jambojet, the low-cost carrier owned by the Kenyans.
“We want to be a greater Eastern African operator, flying to Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, the Comoros, South Sudan and Goma and Kisangani in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo,” Hondius is quoted in an interview in Nairobi.
Economic growth in the Uganda and her neighbours who Jambojet is targeting, along with its home market of Kenya, is expected to average 5.2 percent this year, outpacing the 4.3 percent expansion in sub-Saharan Africa that’s forecast by the International Monetary Fund. Rival budget carrier FastJet Plc, which was founded with the ambition to become a pan-African carrier, last month said it’s closing routes on the continent including Uganda’s after sales failed to meet expectations.
British Airways last year also suspended flights between Entebbe International Airport and Heathrow, London, airport on grounds that the flights are not “commercially viable.”
KQ’s Jambojet will probably enjoy a better reception that BA and FastJet have.