Revelers were on Thursday left excited as Uganda’s aviation expo organized by the Uganda Professional Pilots Association and the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority(UCAA) kicked off at Entebbe International Airport.
Members of the public were on the opening day treated to acrobatics by pilots from the Uganda Police aviation wing as their choppers made rounds within the skies to ululations and cheers from among others, learners from various institutions of learning.
The Uganda People’s Defence Air Forces(UPDAF) also excited many when the SU-MK30 jets make several maneuvers at Entebbe Airport during the airshow.
There were also joy flights for members of the public around Kampala where the aircraft would fly at low height to enable them view several features including Namboole stadium and the capital Kampala among other.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, the Prime Minister, Robinah Nabbanja urged UCAA to devise all means to popularize air transport among members of the public.
“It is high time you provided as much information as possible to Ugandans and also share with them the career opportunities in this aviation sector. I hope that members of the public, especially those who have had chance to fly for the first time at this expo realise that everyone can travel by air,” Nabbanja said.
The Prime Minister said it is high time Ugandans started using air transport services and encourage others to do the same.
She said the country currently has 13 aerodromes in different parts of the country in a bid to encourage domestic flights, adding that in the next financial year, six of these aerodromes will be upgraded.
“We have domestic air operators in the country. Therefore, it shouldn’t be only foreigners or tourists to fly to the various destinations around the country but all Ugandans. You need to fly and see what happens in the aviation sector.”
UCAA Director General, Fred Bamwesigye said the expo and the airshow are meant to demystify the country’s aviation sector.
“Up to now, aviation services are seen by many as being for the privileged but we want to change this. We want to take the aviation sector to the population so they can associate with it. We want to bring aviation to the public other than keeping it up there where many people are not reaching,” Bamwesigye said.
He said in a bid to continue demystifying the aviation sector, aviation expos and airshows will soon be held in various parts of the country where there are aerodromes.
“We want to change the status quo where aviation is categorized as being for only the rich and by extending the airshows and aviation expo to various parts of the country where we have aerodromes like Arua, Mbarara, Jinja, Gulu, Kotido, Kasese and Lira among others, will serve the intended purpose of bringing aviation to the people,” the UCAA Director General said.
According to, Capt. Aziz Sentamu, the president of the Uganda Professional Pilots Association(UPPA), the umbrella body for pilots and flight engineers, the expo is also meant to cast light on the various careers that members of the public cant take on in the aviation sector.
“Government has invested heavily in this aviation industry but we realized not many people know about the career opportunities in this sector. We thought this is the best time to sensitize the public about the aviation sector. For example when you talk of the aviation, many only think of pilots but thee are many jobs that people don’t know of. We want to demystify that with the aviation expo,” said Capt. Sentamu.
This year’s aviation expo and airshow will run up to Saturday, June, 24 at Entebbe Airport.