Entebbe, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Uganda started 57th Independence Day celebrations two days early today with the arrival of the national team from the World Athletics Championship hours before two new Bombardier planes landed to join its national airline.
Gold medalists Halimah Nakaayi and Joshua Cheptegei led the national team off a plane from Doha, where Uganda has finished 9th overall, their best performance ever in the history of the World Athletics Championships.
Cheptegei capped the performance with in a thrilling 10,000 meters gold on Sunday night while Nakaayi earlier shocked the 800m field to win.
He becomes only the fourth Ugandan to win World Athletics Championship gold, joining steeple-chaser Dorcus Inzikuru in Helsinki 2005, Stephen Kiprotich off track in the marathon in Moscow 2013 and Nakaayi in the 800m at Doha 2019.
Other medals for Uganda at the Worlds have been two Silvers by Davis Kamoga Athens 1997 and Joshua Cheptegei 2017; Bronzes by Moses Kipsiro Osaka 2007 and Solomon Mutai in Beijing 2015.
Two more Uganda Airlines Planes
Two hours after the Ugandan ambassadors had arrived, two Bombardiers that had travelled all the way from Canada, landed to a water gun salute.
Uganda last year ordered for four CRJ900 regional jets with Bombardier Commercial Aircraft, as part of the much-anticipated plan for the revival of Uganda Airlines.
The airlines were flown in by Uganda pilots; Captains Emmanuel Mutebi, Charles Karabarinde, Stephen Ariong and the Corporate QM Michael Kaliisa.
The Hon minister of State for works and transport (works) Gen Katumba Wamala accompanied by the Permanent secretary Waiswa Bageya receiving the third and fourth Bombardier CRJ 900 aircraft on arrival at Entebbe International Airport pic.twitter.com/6ghFAhmNCF
— Ministry of Works & Transport (@MoWT_Uganda) October 7, 2019
The airlines has 12 pilots and 12 co-pilots “All of them are Ugandans and some of them have completed their training and some of them are still undergoing training. We have got 24 captains; 12 captains and 12 first officers or co-pilots,” said acting Uganda Airlines CEO, Ephraim Bagenda.
Uganda’s revived airline is the first carrier to operate the new CRJ-series Atmosphere cabin in Africa. The airline will operate the CRJ900 in dual-class configuration with 76 economy seats and 12 first class seats.
According to the manufacturer, the new model atmosphere cabin sets new standards of passenger experience in the regional jet market segment.
Key features of the new interior comprise of larger passenger living space, wheel-first roller bag capability, more spacious lavatory, increased cabin connectivity options, all integrated into a contemporary design and material choices.
Atmosphere cabin design allows passengers to carry and store an “oversized” roller bag within the aircraft cabin bins which minimizes the need to check bags at the counter or the gate.