Staff Writer

The Namibia Airports Company (NAC) says it has begun rehabilitation works on the Eros Airport Runway, project which will last for about three months to improve the runway which has outlived its lifespan.

The development comes as the Windhoek Observer revealed the airstrip had exceeded its design life of 25 years.

“Contractors’ Otesa/Roadmark were appointed for the remedial works at a cost of N$23 million. The project is fully funded by the central government with NAC as the project implementation partner and the works include the mill and replacement on the runway to address the bumpy runway and potholes which has developed over the years. This remedial works is intended as a short-term solution, which will carry the runway for about two to three years,” Spokesperson Dan Kamati said.

He said the rehabilitation works will not interfere with the airport daily operations as it will be conducted after operational hours.

“This project is expected to be completed by first week of October 2020, while the full-scale rehabilitation of the runway, taxiways and apron is estimated to cost about N$300 Million which is not feasible now, hence the remedial works, Holding Action,” Kamati said adding that before this project commenced, daily inspections were conducted to identify areas that require immediate maintenance to ensure that the pavements are safe for operation.

He said the company’s revenues had significantly taken a dip due to banned air travel.

“Airport Operations are funded through the generation of aeronautical and non-aeronautical revenue which has collapsed as a result of the travel bans and restrictions imposed by various governments amidst the Corona Virus pandemic,” Kamati said.

“Despite this, NAC remains committed its obligation to render airport operations for humanitarian, repatriation and cargo operations and these activities continue to induce significant costs to the NAC. The company has reduced costs on non-core operations and discretionary spending whilst ensuring safe and secure operations during these turbulent times in ensuring that it continues to fulfill our mandate.”