(JollofNews) – President Macky Sall has commissioned Senegal’s new international airport in the town of Diass, 40 km from the capital Dakar.
The modern state-of-the-art Blaise Diagne International Airport was build to accommodate between 10 and 20 million passengers yearly.
Thursday’s inauguration was a colourful ceremony in the presence of President Sall’s counterparts from Gabon, Ali Bongo, Gambia, Adama Barrow, Guinea-Bissau, José Mario Vaz, and Sao Tome and Principe’s Prime Minister, Patrice Trovoada.
“With Blaise Diagne International Airport, Senegal is definitely taking off. It’s a symbol to which can be added the story of Blaise Diagne, a figure of our historical heritage as the first black MP in the French National Assembly. The AIDB got off the ground through a combination of tireless work and financial ingenuity” President Sall said.
According to him, all Senegalese must feel proud to have participated in the construction of what he called a jewel that had cost CFA423.950 billion to build.
AIBD’s Managing Director, Abdoulaye Mbodj, described the facility as a monumental infrastructure for Senegal.
“The head of state was personally involved before the project could materialize. When President Sall took over the reins, work was at 30 percent while funding was 50 percent. This was back in 2012” Mbodj explained.
According to Mbodj, the consolidation of finances and changes to management procedures had helped to restore donor confidence in the government.
The AIBD whose foundation stone was laid on April 4, 2007, can accommodate five flights at any one time, including those of the Airbus A380.
Its 50-metre-high control tower has a 3770m2 surface area.
A total of 12 aircraft including a presidential plane were involved in the airport’s commissioning.