Fred K. Bamwesigye (C), the Director General at UCAA addressing the press as Captain Aziz Sentamu (L), the President- UPPA and Vianney M. Luggya (R), the UCAA Spokesperson, look on
The Uganda Professional Pilots Association (UPPA) in partnership with Uganda Civil Aviation Authority (UCAA) has organized an aviation expo themed ‘Come and Learn about Aviation’ scheduled for June 22-24, 2023 at Entebbe International Airport.
Speaking at the joint press conference held at the VIP Press room at Entebbe Airport on Wednesday, Fred K. Bamwesigye, the Director General at UCAA, said the expo will feature various components including opportunities for students and the general public to get more information about career guidance in relation to aviation industry, aerobatics, static aircraft exhibitions providing opportunities to the public to enter aircraft and view the cockpit, talk to cabin and flight crew and get deeper-first hand knowledge of air transport operations.
“The aviation expo has an exciting bit where some members of the public will get a chance to fly for the first time on payment of a modest fee, and these will flown around Kampala for around 30-40 minutes,” Bamwesigye said.
He explained that UCAA has supported UPPA in holding the aviation expo “because it is a good opportunity to further demystify the seemingly complex aviation industry and encourage the public to use air transport services.”
He noted that the expo comes at a time when the aviation industry is slowly recovering from the adverse effects of COVID-19.
“In April 2023. Entebbe International Airport recorded a total of 127,283 passengers (62, 413 arrivals and 64,870 departures), an average of 4,242 per day compared to 122,341 in the same period of April 2022 (an average of 4,078 per day),” he said.
According to Bamwesigye, this isn’t the first time the aviation industry is hosting such an exciting event.
In 2012 as Uganda celebrated her 50th Independence Anniversary, a massive airshow was held under the theme; Fly@50 for 50k.
“The flying cost was low because UCAA had fully sponsored the Air Show and the objective was to give the flying public an opportunity to fly. About 2,100 people had a chance to fly,” he said, adding that this time round, the event isn’t fully sponsored hence the rationale for entry and flying fees to enable UPPA deliver a good product.
Further, UCAA held mini airshows at Mbarara Airfield in 2005 and Kajjansi Airfield, earlier on.
“The public response has been massive at all previous such events, and the plan is to continue holding the events at different Airfields across the country, in future, putting into consideration other logistical requirements,” he said.
He revealed that the upcoming airshow will be spiced up with entertainment to keep the public engaged.
Why you should attend
Captain Aziz Sentamu, the President- Uganda Professional Pilots Association (UPPA), said the expo will be used to promote aviation as a career to the young generation.
“All approved aviation schools will be present and exhaustive career guidance will be given to every person present at the expo . Expect to find all Approved Aviation Training Organizations and Academies,” Sentamu said, adding that there will be sensitization about different career opportunities in aviation including Flying, ATC, Engineering, Aviation Law, Management, Cabin crew, Dispatch, Accident investigation, UAV pilots and designers, Aviation environmentalists, Airfield engineers, Load Masters and Aviation security, among others.
He added that the expo will open the minds of Ugandans to aviation as a business.
“Those in attendance will have a chance to learn about aviation as a business and as a trade tool,” he said, adding that the expo will bring together the different operators (aviation employers) as partners in the industry.
“Most Ugandans still have the mentality that Uganda has no jobs in Aviation and hence have shied away from encouraging their children to venture into Aviation as a career. The essence of the expo is to show that we actually have employers ready to employ those trained,” Sentamu said.