Leader of the Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) McHenry Venaani has pledged his support for local company Paragon Aviation taking over ground handling services from Menzies Aviation at the Hosea Kutako International Airport (HKIA).

He says it is only fair that they are granted a chance to prove themselves.

Vernaani paid a courtesy visit to the Namibia Airports Company (NAC)'s Chief Executive Officer and executives. The PDM officials posed questions, familiarised themselves with the operations of the company, and sought clarity on ongoing developments, such as safety and security at the HKIA.

PDM leader McHenry Venaani pronounced himself on the saga surrounding the awarding of handling services to Paragon Aviation at the airport, pledging his support. This follows a question to the NAC's Chief Executive Officer, Bisey |Uirab to clarify rumours that the airport company and Paragon have a coalition, which he denounced.

With a clear operation contract in place between NAC and Menzies Aviation, Venaani says he was baffled as to why the British-owned company would spend money on court matters. He further echoed the importance of transforming the economy by supporting equal opportunities for bids by Namibian companies at the airport.

|Uirab however, says there is low interest in participation by local companies in terms of bid applications, and some filled in the wrong details.

Responding to questions around alleviating congestion, improving infrastructure development, and safety and security at the airport, |Uirab admitted that there is a need for another terminal and facilities to avoid congestion in years to come. Following some renovations worth N$250 million, though, immigration operations as well as security screening features have improved, among others.

|Uirab has expressed satisfaction with Paragon's operations, saying it has certified national requirements to provide services.

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Celma Ndhikwa