The Ministry Transport, Trade and Tourism has confirmed that Chileka Airport will be ready for major airliners by the end of December this year.
This is according to the ministry’s public relations officer, James Chakwera, who said the development follows the good progress of rehabilitation works on the airport’s runway.
The airport was closed to big aircrafts some months ago on safety grounds following reports that its runway developed potholes which were seen as a risk by airlines that use it.
The South African Airways announced that it had suspended flights on safety grounds, limiting its flying to Kamuzu International Airport in Lilongwe.
The Ministry of Transport has confirmed to the local media that the aircrafts will start touching down on the rehabilitated runway this coming December when the facility will re-open.
Chakwera said the contractor who is doing the rehabilitation works has assured the ministry that the work will be completed by the end of next month claiming they are in final touches of project.
“As you know government started the rehabilitation project soon after closure of the airport on April 24 on security grounds which was due to potholes which were seen developing on the airport’s runway.
“The contractor says he is now in the final touches as they are now putting the final layer of the runway surface and it’s expected that it will be completed this month end and afterwards, they will be fixing lights along the runway and that will be followed by painting. So we are hoping that it will be ready for use by the end of December,” said Chakwera.
In the first place, the project was slated for completion by the end of last July but failed a development which the ministry has said was as a result of some hiccups.