WE urge the Government to restore a national airline as it will help save the much needed foreign exchange and enhance the tourism sector, says UNIP secretary general Alfred Banda.
In an interview yesterday, Mr Banda appealed to the Government to accelerate the process of reviving the national airline explaining that air travel drained foreign exchange reserves.
He said that the party was pleased with the expansion of the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport (KKIA) and the political will exhibited to grow the aviation industry as it would become a hub to host other airlines in the region and foster growth in the tourism industry if Zambia acquired its own airline.
‘’ We urgently need a national airline – the national flag carrier- in order for us to save billions of kwacha we spend every week on other carriers.
As a nation we are, currently, a net importer of this service. Join us in this quest to lobby the government of the day to bring back Zambia Airways- The national flag carrier,’’ he said.
Mr Banda said that there were a lot of unanswered questions involving the defunct Zambia Airways arguing that there was no need for its liquidation.
He said that the initiative was feasible as well as lucrative through the hiring of a small but efficient and competent stuff and that it was not a mere far-fetched dream and wondered how countries such as Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, and Botswana had managed.
Mr Banda appealed for no political interference and for Government officials to pay their way at all times and to respect decisions of management.
The leaders must only be answerable at the annual general meeting meetings to its shareholders.
He expressed hope that the country was up to the task and that it would take a leaf from Ethiopia with their marvel airline and had become a force to reckon with at world stage.