Even after the airport authorities said it would take just 90 days to complete construction of a modern terminal at the Juba International Airport, air travelers have been waiting under tents since towards the end of 2016.
Okay. Fast-forward to 2018…..last month, the Director General of the airport, Kur Kuol, told Eye Radio the terminal would be ready and opened by July 9, the Independence Day.
“There are two things which are missing now. One is the conveyor belt, and the airline counters,” he said.
“As soon as the conveyor belts and counters for the airlines arrive, because already the contractor he has assured us that this terminal, that it will be opened on 9th July or maybe before the 9th of July.”
Well, 9 days have elapsed since the Independence Day on Monday last week.
When Eye Radio asked what happened to the plans, Kur said he was not the relevant person to answer the question.
He suggested that we talk to Chief Executive of the South Sudan Civil Aviation Authority – who he said is in charge of the airport affairs.
But the acting Chief Executive, Stephen Rombi, said he is not qualified to talk about it, because his boss is not around.
He referred us back to the Director General of the Airport, Kur.
When asked again, Kur said his pervious statement regarding opening of the new terminal, was according to the Ministry of Transport and the contractor which is in charge of the construction.
In a fact-finding attempt on this issue, Eye Radio spoke with the Minister of Transport, during the celebration of Egyptian National Day in Juba on Tuesday.
He said there were some technical issues. But, John Luk declined to speak more on the matter.
The construction of the new terminal comes after the government failed to finish the construction of the old terminal that began in 2009.
The construction of this terminal started in November 2016; and Kur said it would be complete within 3 months.
It has been nearly 2 years since then.
Up to date, travelers have been complaining about the delay in the opening of the new terminal, saying the conditions at the tents are deplorable.
They say these tents are all the time congested and have poor hygiene and lack of standard services.
As time goes by, the members of the public will continue to suffer under tents behind the delay of the completion or launch of the badly needed terminal.
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