BY Mary Ugbodaga
Qatar Airways has launched its inaugural flight to Abuja, with Adeola Sowemimo, the first Nigerian female Boeing 787 Pilot and the first Nigerian female Pilot to fly for Qatar Airways.
Abike Dabiri-Erewa, chairman of Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM), disclosed this via her official Twitter handle on Friday.
“Today Qatar Air operated its inaugural flight to Abuja, Nigeria. And our own Adeola Ogunmola Sowemimo was on the right seat as she assisted Captain Khan Sameer Ali,” she said.
“Sowemimo is the first Nigerian female Boeing 787 pilot and the first Nigerian female pilot to fly for Qatar Airways.”
Also in a video posted by Qatar Airways via Twitter on Friday, Sowemimo said: “I can’t wait to fly this new route and I look forward to welcoming you on board soon.”
Meanwhile, the airline said it will operate three weekly flights to Abuja via Lagos, making this its sixth new destination since COVID-19 pandemic started.
Hendrik Du Preez, Africa’s vice president of Qatar Airways, said: “We are excited to land in the capital of Nigeria today, our second destination in Nigeria. I am proud to say Abuja is the sixth new destination we have launched since the start of the pandemic.
“With the strong Nigerian diaspora in Europe, U.S. and the UK, we are thrilled to now be flying three times weekly to Abuja via Lagos.
“We look forward to working closely with our partners in Nigeria to steadily grow this route and support the recovery of tourism and trade in the region.”
Rabiu Yadudu, managing director of Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), told Qatar Airways that “this is another important milestone in our mutual service delivery to the nation, especially during these challenging times.
“We assure you of our consistent support and cooperation that will add more value to your operations.”
Qatar Airways Abuja service, operated by Boeing 787 Dreamliner, features 22 seats in business class and 232 seats in economy class.