Margate airport reaches new heights

2016-07-28 06:00
    PHOTO:   candyce   krishna Ready to board CemaA's new aircraft (from left) Johanna Godden, HCM mayor Nomusa Mqwebu, Idah Mbotho and CemAir CEO, Miles van der Molen.

PHOTO: candyce krishna Ready to board CemaA's new aircraft (from left) Johanna Godden, HCM mayor Nomusa Mqwebu, Idah Mbotho and CemAir CEO, Miles van der Molen.

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THE elderly and children from previously disadvantaged backgrounds, who have never flown before, got the chance to fly on Thursday.

Ward councillors from 29 wards within the Hibiscus Coast Municipality were asked to bring a senior citizen and a child from their wards to the launch of CemAir’s new aircraft at Margate Airport.

Three 20-minute trips were scheduled for the first-time flyers and some got to fly in the new 8Q300 50-seater plane.

At the launch HCM mayor Nomusa Mqwebu said the new plane will be a legacy to councillors who are nearing the end of their term.

“CemAir will always have our support,” said Mqwebu.

Municipal manager Max Mbili said he hoped youngsters from the black community will pursue careers in aviation.

“By taking these young children on the plane, I hope they will take a liking to it and strive to become pilots one day. The aviation industry is currently white-dominated and it would be good to see black people become pilots,” he added.

CemAir CEO, Miles van der Molen, said the new aircraft was ideal for the Margate to Johannesburg route as it could withstand all weather conditions and would get passagers to Johannesburg quicker because it is a faster plane.

“CemAir has had wonderful support from the community and I can say that this venture has been the highlight of my career,” he said.

Van der Molen added that although his competitors offered cheaper flights to Durban, flying from Margate was more convenient as one did not have to bear the additional cost of driving to Durban and paying for parking.

“Also, we have not increased the cost of our flights from the time we started the airline three years ago,” he said.

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