CAA “Poverty Hampering Domestic Air Travel in Uganda”
The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) says poverty is a major wet blanket on the growth and development of domestic air travel in Uganda.
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.
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.