Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu (right); Air Peace Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, Allen Onyema and Ondo State First Lady, Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu during the Air Peace’s inaugural flight into Akure Airport recently
Charges N10,000 ticket fares
Air Peace airlines has opened the Lagos-Akure-Lagos route to further enhance economic integration of the south west states and Nigeria through air transport.
The new route, which is a partnership between the local airlines and the Ondo State Government, is to avail easier movement of persons and goods between Akure, the Ondo State capital, and Lagos, the country’s economic hub.
Apparently to attract patronage of new customers, ticket fares for the Lagos-Akure or Akure-Lagos (one-way) trip has been fixed for N10,000 per seat. The rate took effect earlier in the week when Air Peace made its inaugural flight from the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos to Akure Airport.
On board the maiden Lagos-Akure flight, which touched down to a spectacular water shower at the Akure Airport were the State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of Air Peace, Allen Onyema, Chief Operating Officer of the airlines, Oluwatoyin Olajide, the carrier’s Ambassador, Kcee and other dignitaries.
First Lady of the State, Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu and the Deputy Governor, Agboola Ajayi, led a mixed crowd of government officials and other dignitaries to receive the Boeing 737 aircraft with registration mark 5N-BQO at the Akure Airport.
An elated Akeredolu said his administration decided to partner with the airline to drive the economic development of the oil-producing state through air transportation.
Emphasising the essence of the partnership Akeredolu said: “No doubt, we have an air link to Ondo from Lagos. It means a lot to Ondo State people. Our drive is for investment and a lot of our investors want to come in.
“We are starting with Lagos-Akure and Akure back to Lagos. We already have an airline running Akure-Abuja but it would not stop Air Peace if they find out that they can also do combined flight. It will be in our interest, but what we have now is Lagos-Akure, Akure-Lagos with Air Peace.”
He advised officials of the state government to take advantage of the new flight service to avoid kidnappers and other criminal elements, warning that his administration would not pay ransom to secure anybody’s release.
The governor disclosed that Air Peace was the preferred among other airlines the state negotiated with.
“We discussed with many airlines, but those involved in the negotiations reported to me that Air Peace gave us the best in terms of their offer. The offer appears better than other airlines. And again, it is a growing airline. They have even promised us to deploy one of their expected new aircraft to this route,” Akeredolu said.
He thanked the Chairman of Air Peace, Allen Onyema for supporting his administration’s effort to open up Ondo State to investors and investment.
On his part, Onyema assured that Air Peace was in Ondo State to collaborate with the Akeredolu’s administration to boost the economy of the state and power the development of the country through air transport.
He said: “It is part of Air Peace’s drive to contribute to the unity and development of this country. So, you can see now, N10,000 for a one-way trip; it has never happened before. We decided to do this in order to assist Ondo State. Human and mineral resources abound in Ondo State. We want to help investors go into Akure and Ondo State.
“Aviation is a catalyst for economic development. It is part of our policy to give every part of this country a chance to develop. We are going into Akure to help them actualise their own economic development plan. Investors are already asking questions about the state. They are looking forward to going there.”