Antigua Airways ‘promoting Africa- Caribbean linkages’


Following numerous news articles about Antigua Airways, the airline’s Managing Director, Opoyemi Olorunfemi, issued a press statement seeking to temper controversy and assuage Antiguans and Barbudans.

Since its first flight on November 1, many questions have been asked about Antigua Airways’ value to the country and other issues related to the fledgling airline.

In an article sent to us, the airline wrote:

“The Caribbean and Africa have a long history of close relations. The West Indies were the first to experience the slave trade, with slaves shipped from Africa to Jamaica, Barbados, Grenada, Montserrat, and Tobago.”

“The consequence of this trade is reflected in the fact that in many Caribbean cultures aspects such as calypso and soca derive from African traditions, African dances such as mambo are performed by Caribbean dancers, and food such as jerk chicken and roti canai can be found on many menus in the region.”

“There is a growing linkage between these countries and Africa.”

“Nigeria has become one of Antigua and Barbuda’s top 10 trading partners and an important hub for Nigerian businesspeople looking for tax havens or property investments in Asia or Europe.”

“For years, the African continent has been an important player in the Caribbean’s economic development, intricately linked through trade, migration, foreign direct investment, and cultural exchange.”

“This has been based on factors including shared history and geography, common language, religion, identity, and similarities in the way they have developed their economies since decolonisation.”

“The development in African countries is an indication of the growing linkage between the Caribbean and Africa, with Antigua and Nigeria having a lot to offer each other.”

“Therefore, the linkages must be strengthened by all means at a regional level as this will help in the further economic development of both countries of interest.”

“The growth in air connectivity between Nigeria and all island states has been phenomenal over the past decade, especially within the West Africa sub-region which includes Nigeria.”

“This was due to an increasing population, rising demand for travel, tourism products, and services as well as better economic conditions within some countries in the West African sub-region.”

“In the last decade, we have seen major growth in the African economies, and this has brought about a renaissance in Africa.”

“Industries once dominated by countries outside of Africa are now owned and operated by companies on the continent, creating more opportunities for Africans to travel to other parts of the world.”

“Antigua Airways is well poised to offer them direct flights to Antigua and Barbuda, also allowing comfortable travel.”

“We expect this development will not only be beneficial to our local industries but also for our Caribbean neighbours, who can use our hub as a way to connect with Africa.”

“An example was the recent opening of the Nigerian Embassy in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad.”

“Done at a time when there were some diplomatic issues between both countries, it helped strengthen bilateral relations and facilitate better trade ties, especially between the two countries’ manufacturing industries.”

“Additionally, the recent signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on Economic Cooperation between Nigeria and Antigua and Barbuda was a milestone that will further strengthen these links.”

“This memorandum establishes a framework for enhancing cooperation in the areas of trade, investment, finance, tourism, education, and technology transfer.”

“Linkages can be effective means for businesses to reach their customers and get satisfactory returns.”

“The development of linkages between Africa and the Caribbean will be beneficial in promoting tourism, technology transfer, skills transfer, and doing business with one another, ensuring Nigerians get a fair chance in these global industries.”

SOURCE: Observer

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  1. Damn nonsense! The Nigerian Embassy in T&T is older than the hills, long time around. Antigua is being used to filter to the other islands unprocessed persons without any visible means. This is unprecedented and a serious threat to the security of the region. Will the rest of the Caribbean and Antigua people sit back and allow this wierd security threat to continue.

    • Many Africans are trying to get to Europe and The USA via the ocean. Many perish on these dangerous sea journeys.

      It does appear that the government of Antigua & Barbuda has decided to cash in on the ploy of the desperate Africans. So instead of our black brothers and sisters attempting to get to Europe via the perilous route of the sea; now they can pay for a safer ride on “Antigua Airways” to get to Antigua and then sort their onward journey to the USA or Europe.

      It seems like a very calculated and innovative plan subtly put together by the government of Antigua and its African comrades.

      The USA and Europe are watching though. It only calculates to be governmental organized “human trafficking”.

      Corruption at its Highest level.

      When will it end

      • This is such regrettable line of thinking. You have been watching too many fiction movies.
        I’ll leave it right there.

  2. Oh please! This is human trafficking, pure and simple! There was a video in Africa advertising this airline and saying it was a way for Africans to get to Mexico. MEXICO!!! What are they trying to get to Mexico for?! Not to try to get to the US border? If they were interested in really seeing the Caribbean, they would be visiting nearby islands. When it walks like a pig, smells like a pig and sounds like a pig. Chances are, it is a …….

  3. On listening to the video by Fast Fly Links Travel and Tours, it is obvious that these flights from Nigeria are nothing more than human trafficking…people who have been taken in by fraudsters to be thinking that they can come to Antigua and easily get flights into westernized countries…USA, UK, Europe, Canada etc. with fake documents and/or go to Mexico and walk through the USA boarder. A republican congress will be in place in a couple of days and it has already been stated that the southern border is most definitely on their agenda. Airline employees get extensive training on fake documents etc. and are not about to allow questionable people to board their flights to go anywhere. Airlines become responsible for people trying to make an illegal entry and they are not about to risk the expense of that responsibility.
    This whole sham can and probably will have dire consequences for the Antigua people who travel on visas because the consulates for those countries on the ‘Nigerian travel to illegally list’ will advise of the high risk out of Antigua and Barbuda and are very capable of blocking and/or making it extremely difficult to obtain a visa.
    Nobody except the involved fraudsters/politicians in Nigeria and Antigua are gaining anything out of this and it needs to be stopped before Antigua becomes blacklisted by the outside world. WAKE UP ANTIGUA.

  4. Notes From a Native Son Of The Rock! “The Afrocentric Paradigm is a revolutionary shift in thinking proposed as a constructural adjustment to black dislocation, disorientation, decenteredness and lack of agency.” – Dr. Molefi Asante, Afrocentricity, The Theory of Social Change!

    In this the International Decade for People of African Descent (2015 – @024) do the 95% People of African Descent resident on Antigua and Barbuda know that at a minimum 30% of their DNA sugar chains are Nigerian plus other West African ethnicities!
    Where ignorance is bliss its folly to be wise!

    When will the Wiseacres free themselves from Mental Slavery, Colonialism and White Supremacists’ Inferiority in all of our political. economic, socio-cultural, technological, legal and ecological institutions and attendant systemic manifestations! “In the Afrocentric view the problem of cultural location takes precedence over the topic or the data under consideration. The arguments that Africans have been moved off of social, political, philosophical, and economic terms for half a millennium. Consequently it becomes necessary to examine all data from the standpoint of Africans as subjects, human agents, rather than as objects in a European frame of reference.” Asante speaking to the People of Guadeloupe!

    Now that the Wiseacres have touted all the negatives, can the Pan African Scholars and Practitioners place the positives before the People of African Descent!

    “What would African people do if there were no white people?” In other words, what natural responses would occur in the relationships, attitudes toward the environment, kinship patterns, preferences for colors, type of religion, and historical referent points for African people if there had not been any intervention of colonialism or enslavement? Afrocentricity answers this question by asserting the central role of the African subject within the context of African history, thereby removing Europe from the center of the African reality. In this way, Afrocentricity becomes a revolutionary idea because it studies ideas, concepts, events, personalities, and political and economic processes from a standpoint of black people as subjects and not as objects, basing all knowledge on the authentic interrogation of location.”

    Nuff Said!

    • @John French II…

      Physical linkage
      Linking with the African Continent physically(land grants were given to such groups as the EWF – Ethiopian World Federation in Ethiopian decades ago. Shashenane is still growing as a Town in Ethiopia).

      Ghana have opened its borders to Africans in the Diaspora for Decades and many have made the trek back to help develop Africa.

      The linkage with the African continent have being established in music(reggae to afrobeat is proof).

      Spiritually, many of us have not stop working with Spirits of Mami_Wata and Papa_Elegba by understanding their significance in our daily lives vs the indoctrination’s, of the Flavians.

      If, the ABLP government is so interested in establishing the African link with the Caribbean, why are they still systematically destroying the little that’s is left of Our African linkage and culture? Where are the changes to the Education systems to become more Afrocentric? They’re teaching Mandarin in school and this is great but where is Swahili in our schools?
      Our government is still persecuting, punishing, discriminating against the Rastafarian?

      While Antigua Airways is a great concept, there is something amiss with this business venture.

      Nuff Said!

      Jumbee_Picknee aka Ras Smood
      De ‘ole Dutty Peg Foot Bastard

      Vere Cornwall Edwards

  5. Just wait, step one open a new way for illegal migrants to get to the US and possibly the EU. Step 2 the establishment of violent fundamentalist Islamic terrorists in the Caribbean. As if the island didn’t learn enough from the DC Sniper/ John walker Muhammed and Lee Mallorca saga. This is going to end very badly for Antigua and is showing the world that the island is a security risk to the rest of the world. Add the CIP program, the offshore banking industry which is known to protect fraudsters and keep the profits for criminal cartels and drug syndicates and it is clear we are on course for a serious showdown with the world community. Unfortunately Antigua depends much more on handouts, loans and charity from the world than the world cares for Antigua. It looks like heavy manners are going to be in store for our future if we continue with these corrupt and devious endeavours.

  6. All people here who are calling this human trafficking. Do you know that Africans can fly already to the Caribbean with British Airways and/ or Virgin with a stop over in Paris or London. No visas needed. Possibility exists for decades already.
    So all these people to me are either bad minded ignorant racists or uneducated brainwashed fools

  7. @Peter Jonker. Hate to smash your bubble, but Nigerians CANNOT just jump on a BA or Virgin flight and go to UK, Europe and/or Mexico etc. without a VISA. They cannot even go to many of the Caribbean Islands without a VISA. We are not ignorant, brainwashed or racist. It is obvious from the video and physically obvious from sightings that the Nigerians coming to Antigua are NOT tourists or investors.
    It would appear that they have probably been duped/swindled into thinking that they would easily get a flight or boat to some other destination that would give them the opportunity to illegally enter a westernized country of their choice. We do not know anything about these people except that they appear to be broke but we do know that Nigeria is known for terrorism, slavery, genocide and Ebola. Antigua cannot survive the negative publicity that can come out of this govt. involved corruption. It needs to be stopped before the s**t hits the fan big-time and we, the people end up paying in every which way!

  8. Idiots! USA, you cannot fly to the USA from Antigua today, ECCAA is a FAA Category state, NO new airline can fly to the USA and that includes LIAT (2020) which may or may not ever fly, as PM Browne has chosen to focus on a fake airline with no AOC instead? is that nuts? LIAT is doomed, it has been a 1-2 aircraft operation for 2 years Caricom states don’t want to touch it, because they see PM Browne has made a MESS, he wants investment, but LIAT 2020 has no AOC, and LIAT (1974) owes money left and right and a broken brand. LIAT ordered 9 more ATR-72-600 to add to the 7 they have, so soon CAL will have 16 68 passengers ATR-72-600 and LIAT will die! cannot compete with the smaller 48-seat ATR-42-600, the proud airline has been killed by PM Browne.

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