0

Glenys: Cat Island Airport Handling Unacceptable

Englerston MP Glenys Hanna Martin.

Englerston MP Glenys Hanna Martin.

By MORGAN ADDERLEY

Tribune Staff Reporter

madderley@tribunemedia.net

FORMER Transport Minister Glenys Hanna Martin described the Minnis Administration’s treatment of the Arthur’s Town, Cat Island airport as “unacceptable” in a statement released yesterday.

She was responding to comments by Tourism and Aviation Minister Dionisio D’Aguilar, who revealed the government is at a “crossroads” over whether it will repair or permanently close the airport.

On Monday, Sky Bahamas announced it was immediately suspending flights to the Arthur Town airport over runway safety concerns.

Mrs Hanna Martin, Opposition Shadow Minister, questioned the government’s handling of this issue, particularly why repairs were delayed, whether the community had been addressed, and the importance of air connectivity to economic development.

Mr D’Aguilar referenced a 2013 Christie administration report, which assessed the economic viability of all 28 Family Island airports and recommended the Arthur’s Town airport not be refurbished or repaired.

Instead, the report concluded the airport be permanently closed and the New Bight, Cat Island airport be upgraded and used to service the entire island.

Mr D’Aguilar said the government “hasn’t made a decision on what to do”.

“There are just simply too many problems and not enough money,” he said, “...and given the priority of this government to focus on airports that will yield substantial investments, such as Exuma and North Eleuthera, it is truly hard to say.”

In her statement, Mrs Hanna Martin asked why the government has neglected the repair of that active runway, knowing “the obvious implications” to aviation safety.

“Secondly, has the Minister considered that that airport services a community who have come to rely on air connectivity to sustain their way of life and that any decision made whether actual or by default should only be made after having due consideration to the needs of that community and only after dialogue and consultation with that community?” she continued.

“Thirdly, is the Minister suggesting that the decision not to repair is being influenced by a Consultant’s report recommending that airport be shut down for economic reasons?”

“Fourthly,” she said, “is the Minister aware that air connectivity is essential to economic development and not necessarily the other way around and that any decision made relative to this and any other of the many airports throughout the archipelago should be on a considered basis having regard to our national development aims and objectives and in particular those of people of Cat Island?

“That comparison to other airport(s) such as North Eleuthera and Exuma is erroneous and is akin to comparing apples and oranges.”

Mrs Hanna-Martin said: “Finally, it is unacceptable that the government has failed to address the safety issues at that airport and has failed to provide a more comprehensive response to the fate of that airport but has instead put into the public domain comments which may only increase the anxiety of the Cat Island community.

“Of course serious questions now arise as to the current state of safety at that airport for all other air traffic.”

In April, Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis addressed the issue of the San Salvador airport during a town hall meeting on the island, saying at this time, the only upgrade he can promise is a new terminal.

Dr Minnis said with the $30 million to $33 million allotted for the 28 airports throughout the country, it would be more beneficial to focus on airports with bigger markets such as Exuma and North Eleuthera.

Comments

sheeprunner12 2 years, 2 months ago

The PLP Cabinet Minister with one of the worst records of mismanagement ................ Shutup please!!!!!!!!!!!

1

hnhanna 2 years, 2 months ago

Davis was the DPM & Minister of work for two five years terms and did nothing for Cat Island. Just like Pindling was the PM for over 25 years, was the MP for South Andros and Andros is still in a bad state

2

bogart 2 years, 2 months ago

If da runway is bad the answer is simple. How come wid all dis water here dere errywhere....aint nobody really using seaplanes like the Twin Otter to move Bahamians round dese islands.....???.....the water chosen for seaplanes should never be needin fixing up...like asplalt...paving...maintenance......plus able to land ya close to ya settle,ent door.....?????

0

Bonefishpete 2 years, 2 months ago

Because ya need a dock to tie de seaplane to. Yous seen the shape of Govt docks lately?

0

rawbahamian 2 years, 2 months ago

Glennys needs to shut her pie hole about anything to do with how the government handles it's affairs especially how her party screwed up so many things when tgey were in power !!!

0

bogart 2 years, 2 months ago

@Bonefishpete.....that bad heh.....peoples needs to be fired for simple tings needing to be done whichin inconveniemce affects many....like the same ting here airport not having economies or synergies.....cost of fixing annually might be more yhan buying jitney amd hiring driver to give free shuttle...??.Anyway with doing way wid Bahamasair losing money on Family Islamd runs...opems opportunities for private guys like yourself to get your inter island airways...using plenyiful Cessnas Caravans. 08s..from right next door in the States....get your own dock..an do business.....offseason bonefishingning...do charters like they be doing in Asia....tourists like that .....new chapter in tourism inter island seaplane touring....an bonefishing ning...

0

Jetflt 2 years, 2 months ago

Glenn’s needs to shut up and retire! It wasn’t that long ago Ms. Hanna that you and your government were in power. What did YOU do about the airport at Cat Island, Exuma and elsewhere. Not a damn thing!!! But now all of a sudden you want to cry foul on airport delapidation?? Nice try!!

1

Clamshell 2 years, 2 months ago

Cat Island needs 3 airports like I need 3 noses.

0

Clamshell 2 years, 2 months ago

There are 3 airports on the island right now, including the one down at Hawk’s Nest.

0

CatIslandBoy 2 years, 2 months ago

Cat Island does not need 2 airports. The airport in New Bight, because of its central location, should be upgraded, to accomodate more traffic, and service the entire island.

0

CoeurDeLion 2 years, 2 months ago

Don't seem to me you know Cat Island, central location my foot. Get a map and check before speaking such. If you know about the airport at the Bight, what upgrades can happen there besides a new terminal? Do you know what it cost someone to get there from north Cat Island? I tell you, I tell you...

0

Clamshell 2 years, 2 months ago

Respectully, sir, most people in the U.S. travel more than 45 minutes to reach an airport. My brother lives in a city of 40,000 people and the nearest commercial airport is 2 hours away. I have a home in a major urban area in the U.S. and the airport in my own city is a half-hour drive.

0

licks2 2 years, 1 month ago

I lived in a city where Ronald Reagan International was 4 hours away. . .had to do that time even in snow!!! Work by train was 2 hours away. . .after 3 trains. . .these Bahamians don't know much of anything. . .perhaps that's why they complain of dumb nonsense all the times. . . ONE-HORSE-TOWN in their world view. . .or should I say lack of world view!!

0

CatIslandBoy 1 year, 5 months ago

I know Cat Island very well. I grew up there as a boy and worked there for several years as and adult. Your insulting drivel does not change the fact that the island is only about 70 miles long. No one, living anywhere on the island, will have to travel more than 50 miles to access the airport at The New Bight..

0

DDK 2 years, 2 months ago

The Arthur's Town runway is 7015'x150' as opposed to the New Bight runway which is 5050'x75'. One would have thought Ms. Hanna-Martin's Government would have kept the runway maintained when they had the opportunity.

0

TalRussell 2 years, 2 months ago

Tell them what's on your mind Comrade Glenny's and what it's all about that UBP lookalike doing ordinary non-privileged Cat Islanders. Shout to speak the words that say how you feel for benefit 91,409 voting red shirts 10 May 2017,,,,,,,,,,,,, all what they need hear to convert 'em away red shirts party.

0

sealice 2 years, 2 months ago

Well Lady it's in exactly the same condition that You and Brave left it in??? WTH you complaining about if it ain't no good now it most certainly wasn't any good 2 years ago??

0

DWW 2 years, 2 months ago

All the bahamas problems nearly paraphrased in one small piece of journalism. Seaplanes have 5 times the maintenance bill which is why they aren't used widely. And the dock issue and of the wind is strong the waves to high they can't fly.

0

sheeprunner12 2 years, 2 months ago

New Providence has one airport ............ GB has one airport ......... why is it that any other island needs more than ONE airport??????? .................. We just have to begin to use common sense.

0

TalRussell 2 years, 2 months ago

Grand Bahama International Airport, Bahamaland

West End Airport, Grand Bahamaland

Deep Water Airport, Grand Bahamaland

http://tribune242.com/users/photos/20...">http://thetribune.media.clients.ellin..." alt="None">

by TalRussell

0

bogart 2 years, 2 months ago

@DWW....Seaplanes operated in thhe Bahamas for years....Chalks...PanAm office right next to Basra next to Beach foot ball stadium. Chalks also had a concrete ramp by PI....and Bimini. There are numbers of Bahamians using the smaller Cessnas ..an at least one Caravan...Sometime ago I know one owner was using Lake Cunningham...an believe inland water in Andros...Wid the electric innovations car planes...by the time ...argument on airport finish carplane...may be the new island transport..oh Chinese months ago put out think 50 ? passanger massive seaplane...Russians have been using some unique jet powered seaplanes and loved the one to barely flyover wave tops..but think next 5 years electric emgines Airbus.? will chamge all costs for aircraft....

0

MaryMack53 2 years, 2 months ago

The government should make the time to visit every island. There way too many excuses and pointing the finger at who did what and didn't do that. Grow up, take responsibility for your actions. Listen to the local's queries see what can be done to modernize their conditions and make them more suitable. Each island should receive the same attention. Stop stirring the pot. We need solutions not another 10 years of complaining.

0

sheeprunner12 2 years, 1 month ago

Desmond Bannister (MOPW) has already done a tour of the islands since May 2017 ............. where have you been hiding?????????

0

licks2 2 years, 1 month ago

Hahahahahahahahahahahahaha. . .the former MOA during the last government complaining about the condition of an airport? Unless that airport "get broke down" in the last year and five months this woman mussie really we stupid. . .or she only talking to PLP dem!

0

Sign in to comment