Uganda Airlines[a] (IATA: UR, ICAO: UGD) is the flag carrier of Uganda. The company is a revival of the older Uganda Airlines which operated from 1977 until 2001. It began flying in August 2019.
|Founded||30 January 2018|
|Commenced operations||28 August 2019|
|Company slogan||Fly the Crane to the Pearl of Africa|
|Parent company||Government of Uganda|
|Headquarters||Entebbe, Wakiso District, Uganda|
|Key people||Godfrey Perez Ahabwe |
The company headquarters are located within Entebbe International Airport, in Wakiso District, approximately 40.5 kilometres (25 mi), by road, south of the central business district of Kampala, the capital and largest city in Uganda.
Following studies and wide consultations, the Cabinet of Uganda, opted to re-launch Uganda Airlines, with six new jets, two of which will be the wide-body, long-range A330-800neo and the other four being CRJ900 aircraft. The studies recommended an equity investment by the government of approximately US$70 million and loans totaling US$330 million, borrowed from regional lenders, such as the Trade and Development Bank, to complete the purchase.
In May 2018, The EastAfrican reported that the Ugandan government, had made a small monetary deposit on each of the six aircraft, while it concludes final financing arrangements. The first batch of CRJ900 aircraft were expected in November 2018, while delivery of the A330-800neo planes was expected in December 2020.
As of 19 March 2019, according to Ephraim Bagenda, the company's chief executive at the time, 12 pilots and 12 co-pilots (total of 24 cockpit crew), all of them Ugandans, had completed their training and certification on the CRJ900-ER aircraft. The first two regional jets were expected in Uganda in April 2019. The third jet was scheduled for delivery in July 2019 and the fourth CRJ900 was expected in September 2019. Between April and June 2019, the airline planned to obtain an Air operator's certificate (AOC) from the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority and start operations by 30 June 2019. On 8 April 2019, the expected delivery date for the first two jets (5X-EQU and 5X-KOB) was reported as Tuesday 23 April 2019.
In April 2019, the delivery of the first Bombardier CRJ900 was confirmed as 23 April 2019 and that of the first Airbus A330-800 neo as the first half of 2021.
On 27 July 2019, the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority awarded Uganda National Airlines Company with an Air Operator Certificate, finalizing a five-step, three-month certification process that cleared the airline to commence commercial operations. On 2 August 2019, the airline announced the launch date as the 28th of the same month, with flights to Nairobi, Mogadishu, Dar-es-Salaam, Juba, Kilimanjaro, Mombasa and Bujumbura.
On the morning of 28 August 2019, Uganda Airlines had its first commercial flight from Entebbe to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) with eight passengers on board.
On 13th November 2019, Uganda Airlines launched the first flight to Kilimanjaro International Airport; thereby completing the first phase of operations to seven routes which was started with flights to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport two months earlier.
In February 2019, the first of four CRJ900 aircraft that Uganda Airlines had ordered, took her first test flight with the livery of the new airline. On 29 March 2019, the Ugandan parliament approved a request by the Ugandan government for USh280 billion (approx. US$76 million), to pay for the first two CRJ900s, expected to arrive in Uganda in April 2019.
On 8 April 2019, the airline firmed up its order for two A330-800 neos, with delivery now expected during the first half of 2021. The third and fourth CRJ900 aircraft are expected to be delivered during the middle of October 2019, according to the Uganda Ministry of Woks and Transport.
- Godfrey Perez Ahabwe (Economist): Chairperson
- Benon Kajuna (Transport economist): Representing the Uganda Ministry of Works and Transport
- Godfrey Ssemugooma: Representing the Uganda Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development
- Catherine Asinde Poran: Independent, Non-Executive Director
- Rehema Mutazindwa: Independent, Non-Executive Director
- Charles Hamya: Independent, Non-Executive Director
- Stephen Aziku Zua: Independent, Non-Executive Director.
In September 2018, the airline placed advertisements in the local print media for prospective airline staff, including directors for maintenance, engineering, commercial affairs and finance. Also corporate quality manager, human resource, ground operations, sales and marketing, cabin services and planning managers are being sought for recruitment. Pilots, cabin crew staff, ticketing officers, human resource officers, IT personnel, station managers and accountants are among the many available positions. In February 2019, The Independent reported that a total of sixteen pilots of the twenty four that had been recruited were sent for training on the operation of the CRJ900 aircraft. Eight were sent to Mirabel, near Montreal, where the jets are assembled. Another eight were sent to a facility in France. When the airline becomes fully functional, a total of thirty-six pilots will have been recruited and trained. As of April 2019, 200 staff positions of an estimated 400 vacancies had been filled.
In October 2019, the airline's board of directors began a search for a new substantive chief executive officer. The then CEO, Ephraim Bagyenda, was reassigned to Director of Engineering and Maintenance. Cornwell Muleya, the airline's technical director, was appointed CEO, in acting capacity.
The airline is jointly owned by two Ugandan Cabinet Ministries; the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development and the Ministry of Works and Transport, on a 50/50 basis.
Associations and membershipsEdit
- The registered name of the company is Uganda National Airlines Company, but it trades as Uganda Airlines.
- Frederic Musisi (22 July 2019). "Uganda Airlines Maiden Flight Pushed To August". Daily Monitor. Kampala. Retrieved 27 July 2019.
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- Bombardier Commercial Aircraft (16 April 2019). "Bombardier Celebrates Delivery of First CRJ900 Aircraft to Uganda Airlines". GlobeNewswire. Retrieved 17 April 2019.
- Sands, Glenn (17 April 2019). "Bombardier delivers first CRJ900 to Uganda Airlines". Mytchett, Surrey, United Kingdom: Hmgaerospace.com. Retrieved 17 April 2019.
- Abubaker Lubowa (7 October 2019). "Uganda Receives Two More Bombardier CRJ 900 Jetliners". Daily Monitor. Kampala. Retrieved 7 October 2019.
- Jonathan Kamoga (3 August 2019). "Uganda Airlines Takes Off August 28". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 10 August 2019.
- Julian Ninsiima (7 June 2019). "Ugandans have high expectations for National Airline! Minister Azuba inaugurates Uganda Airlines Board of Directors". Kampala: PMLDaily.com. Retrieved 9 June 2019.
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- Max Patrick Ocaido (4 April 2019). "Meet Captain Michael Etiang: The New Chief Pilot of Uganda Airlines". Kampala Post. Retrieved 8 April 2019.
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- "Uganda Airlines Bombardier jets to arrive next month". The Independent . Kampala. 19 March 2019. Retrieved 19 March 2019.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
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- Marco Massart (21 April 2019). "5X-KOB Uganda Airlines Bombardier CRJ-900 & 5X-EQU Uganda Airlines Bombardier CRJ-900 At Maastricht Aachen Airport On 21 April 2019". Maastricht Aachen Airport, Netherlands: Planespotters.net. Retrieved 21 April 2019.
- Kungu Al-Mahadi Adam (9 April 2019). "Uganda Has Firmed Up Its Order For Two Airbus A330neos". Kampala: SoftPower Uganda. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
- Paul Ampurire (27 July 2019). "Uganda Airlines Issued Air Operator Certificate By Civil Aviation Authority". Kampala: SoftPower Uganda. Retrieved 27 July 2019.
- Tamale Raymond (26 December 2016). "Uganda Goes Shopping For Planes in Bid To Revive National Carrier". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 19 October 2019.
- Mwesigwa, Alon (25 July 2018). "Inside Government's Ambitious Plan for Uganda Airlines". The Observer (Uganda). Kampala. Retrieved 25 July 2018.
- Baker Batte, and Uganda Radio Network (7 May 2019). "Uganda Airlines Secures Seven Regional Routes". The Observer (Uganda). Kampala. Retrieved 3 June 2019.
- Clare Muhindo (1 October 2019). "Uganda Airlines Cuts Flight Time To Burundi By Seven Hours". monitor.co.ug.
- Liu, Jim (20 November 2019). "Uganda Airlines adds Mombasa service from Nov 2019". routesonline.com.
- Liu, Jim (24 August 2019). "Uganda Airlines Resumes Operation From Late August 2019". routesonline.com.
- "Uganda Airlines Makes Maiden Flight To Kilimanjaro". edge.ug. 13 November 2019.
- Benjamin D Katz (7 August 2018). "Uganda Has Big Plans for New National Airline About to Take Off". New York City: Bloomberg News. Retrieved 9 August 2018.
- Wakabi, Michael (17 May 2018). "Uganda Airlines planes due in November". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 17 May 2018.
- Michael Wakabi, and Allan Olingo (21 July 2018). "Uganda takes to the skies with 'unwanted' Airbus". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 24 July 2018.
- Airbus (18 July 2018). "Uganda Airlines orders two A330neo". Leiden, The Netherlands: Airbus SE. Retrieved 27 December 2018.
- SoftPower (16 April 2019). "Uganda Airlines Officially Receives 2 Bombardier CRJ900s in Canada". Kampala: SoftPower Uganda. Retrieved 17 April 2019.
- Brandon, Mark (16 February 2019). "Uganda Airlines First Bombardier CRJ-900 (CRJ9) in Action in Montreal" (Video). Youtube.com. Retrieved 22 February 2019.
- Kashaka, Umaru (29 March 2019). "MPs Approve Sh280 Billion For Uganda Airlines". New Vision. Kashaka. Retrieved 29 March 2019.
- Paul Ampurire (27 September 2019). "Uganda Airlines Two Remaining Bombardier Aircrafts [sic] Arrive in Two Weeks". Kampala: SoftPower Uganda. Retrieved 30 September 2019.
- Mark Brandon (5 October 2019). "Uganda Airlines Bombardier CRJ-900 Departing Montreal" (Video). Youtube.com. Retrieved 6 October 2019.
- The Independent (6 October 2019). "New Uganda Airlines Bombardiers Land in Netherlands". The Independent (Uganda). Kampala. Retrieved 6 October 2019.
- Joan Akello (22 May 2019). "Cabinet Approves National Airlines Board of Directors". Kampala: Uganda Radio Network. Retrieved 24 June 2019.
- Julian Ninsiima (7 June 2019). "Ugandans Have High Expectations For National Airline! Minister Azuba Inaugurates Uganda Airlines Board of Directors". Kampala: PMLDaily.com. Retrieved 27 June 2019.
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