Thandeka Moyo, Chronicle Reporter
GOVERNMENT is working on the second phase of refurbishment of the Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo International Airport in Bulawayo which will see the erection of a control tower, among other facilities.
Speaking after touring the Ngwigwizi River Bridge along the Bulawayo–Nkayi road last week, the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development Joel Biggie Matiza said all was in place to start the second phase.
He said by the end of the year, the airport will be fully functional.
“We have received an allocation that will help us go onto the second phase of refurbishing the Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo International Airport. For starters, we are going to focus on constructing a control tower and a fire station so that the airport meets international standards,” said Minister Matiza.
He said in line with Vision 2030 his Ministry was working tirelessly to ensure that people have access to roads, railways and airports that meet international standards. “When we talk devolution, we do not only refer to the road network but we are also working on ensuring that at least we revive old airports in areas like Masvingo and Gweru. Ideally all provinces should have at least an airport by the time we reach 2030,” said Minister Matiza.
He said the Victoria Falls International Airport was operating fully after its renovation.
The airport was commissioned three years ago following a $150 million refurbishment and now has capacity to handle wide-bodied aircraft and 1,5 million passengers annually.
Airlines that use Victoria Falls International Airport include Air Zimbabwe, Air Namibia, British Airways, Fastjet, Ethiopian Airways, Kenyan Airways, South African Airways and SA Airlink.
The Zimbabwe Council for Tourism has previously said the airport’s capacity utilisation had risen while tourism players started recording a boom in business owing to consistency by airlines in servicing the route after the airport underwent the facelift.—@thamamoe .