East African carrier, Uganda Airlines made its first flight into West Africa in an operation which saw the carrier evacuating over 50 of the country’s nationals stranded in the region due to the coronavirus pandemic and global travel restrictions.
According to softpower.ug, Ugandan music icon, Eddy Kenzo and a group of over 50 Ugandan nationals and legal residents who had been stuck in West African countries due to Covid travel restrictions have finally returned to the country.
The group had been stranded in West African countries of Nigeria, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Togo, Benin, Senegal, Equatorial Guinea, the Gambia, Niger, the Republic of Guinea and Cameroon.
They arrived at Entebbe International Airport at around 1am Saturday aboard a Uganda Airlines flight. This was part of the ongoing efforts by government to repatriate Ugandans who have been stranded in different parts of the world for the last four months.
The group was received at Entebbe Airport by officials from Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Health, Uganda Airlines and Civil Aviation Authority.
In April, the Ugandan High Commission in Nigeria undertook the registration process of Ugandan nationals who were stranded in not only Nigeria but the entire West African region.
The embassy later coordinated with Uganda Airlines the national carrier for a repatriation flight.
This was Uganda Airline’s 1st maiden flight to the West Africa region. For ease of movement, four assembly points designated hubs were identified i.e. Lagos (Nigeria), Accra (Ghana), Abidjan (Cote d’Ivoire) and Doula (Cameroon) to pick up persons in their respective locations.
The group was accompanied by Nelson Ocheger, Uganda’s High Commissioner to Nigeria and seen off by staff of the High Commission.
BET Award winner, Musuuza Edrisah also known as Eddie Kenzo had gone for a concert tour in Cote d’Ivoire, Ivory Coast before the closure of Entebbe International Airport to commercial passenger flights on March 22.
Others included professionals, academics, students and businessmen/businesswomen who live and or work in a number of West African Countries were also aboard the flight.
Ambassador Ocheger thanked the Host Countries in West Africa for having treated Ugandans well during their time of stay in the respective countries.
In Uganda, Kenzo and the others will undergo at least 14 days in quarantine before they are allowed to go to their homes, as per the guidelines put in place by the Ministry of Health for all returnees.