GOVERNMENT is awaiting approval from Cabinet to immensely make the Zambia Air Force (ZAF) Samora Machel Airbase a civilian airport to help promote tourism in the northern part of the country.
Minister of Transport, Works, Supply, and Communications, Yamfwa Mukanga revealed yesterday.
Mr Mukanga stated that the process was not one to be rushed as there were a lot of procedures to be followed and Cabinet giving a go ahead was one of them.
“This is not a kind of project that has to be rushed. There are laws that need to be revised, then Cabinet will have to approve and give us a go ahead.
“But this does not mean we are not doing anything, we are putting everything in place so that the actual works commence immediately we get the approval,” he said.
Mr Mukanga said Government through his ministry was determined to create an environment that was safe for both people and aircrafts to avoid accidents.
He said the project commenced the moment it was pronounced by President Lungu and his ministry was taking necessary measures so that everything was done accordingly.
“The PF Government has seen how important it is to make the airbase accessible to passenger aircraft because we are working tirelessly at ensuring that we promote tourism just like other sectors in the country, as this is intended to improve the country’s economy,” Mr Mukanga said.
He said no timeframe would be attached to the project as it might only compromise quality of works.
On April 11 this year, President Lungu permitted civilian aircrafts to land at the airbase which is named after late Mozambican president Samora Machel.
This was done as a way of promoting tourism and other economic activities in the region and also to enhance accessibility to Northern Province.