Hargeisa Flydubai, the Emirati government-owned airline failed on two consecutive times to land at Egal International Airport in Hargeisa owing to poor visibility and lack of landing systems at the facility.
A passenger who was aboard the airline on January 11 and 12th of this month told me that the plane could not land at Egal Airport and was forced to return to Dubai via Djibouti airport on the two consecutive days. Ethiopian Airlines also canceled its daily scheduled flights to Egal Airport due to bad weather.
Local Media have learnt that Egal Airport does not have Instrument Approach facilities such as the Instrument Landing System (ILS) or VOR approach system which enables aircrafts to land during low visibility. In the absence of especially ILS approach, aircrafts are exposed to accidents during landing.
Egal Airport is on high altitude area of up to 4437 ft. above sea level thus more vulnerable to visibility problems. It is imperative therefore that ILS approach system be installed at Egal International Airport. Aden Adde International Airport in Mogadishu also lacks Instrument Approach facilities but is less vulnerable compared to Egal Airport because it is on low altitude. Mogadishu has an elevation of only 30 ft. above sea level.
Risks of visibility have further been compounded by erratic climate change necessitating the installation of ILS approach systems to avoid accidents, especially during landing.
The report of the failed landing comes barely two days after a journalist was sentenced to one year by a court in Hargeisa over a story in which Flydubai is alleged to have complained about the safety at Egal Airport.
Horn Cable editor Abdikadir Asayr was sentenced for what the prosecution said was reporting which damaged the reputation of the aviation facility. Flydubai has daily flights to Hargeisa.