Improved Security at Lungi Airport Helps National Growth

For many years the Freetown National Airport at Lungi did not present a good image to visitors to our beloved land. Security was poor with hassle and theft common, facilities were poor for guests to our country and the international aviation community shunned the place. This had slowed us down.


Thanks to our government’s farsighted vision to improve things at the airport to support national development, things are now much better and more visitors are coming to our country helping its high economic growth. 2 initiatives stand out as major factors behind this growth. First the improvement of the fabric of the airport with the new air conditioned terminal opening at the start of last year and secondly a much improved security situation following the appointment of international aviation security experts Westminster Aviation. They have helped take an airport which was dammed for its poor security by the International Civil Aviation Organisation in a 2006 audit, to having security as good as any airport in the developed world. Westminster have not only invested in their staff with good working conditions and money, internationally recognised training, but they have also invested back into supporting the Lungi community by providing school books, musical instruments, sporting equipment and water purification equipment amongst others.

These improvements have given much confidence to other airlines to fly to our country and for others to increase their numbers of flights scheduled. For instance Gambia Bird, Kenya, British Airways have all upped their frequency of flights and Eagle Air have started flights to FNA. Traffic in and out of Freetown National Airport has been noticeably increased since the start of 2013; airport sources estimate that the peak winter season saw a boost of roughly 15%.

Things are planned to get even better going forward. Lack of proper cargo facilities has held back our exports but in 2014 a new cargo facility will open. This will have proper security screening equipment already provided by Westminster and airlines will be able to take on cargo onto their flights which they cannot do at the moment. This has held back our country for too long but now it will change.

This improved airport can only be better for all us Sierra Leoneans and it is becoming a source of national Pride.

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