Churches and Communities Still Manage 285 Airports in West Papua

An airport in Bomela Village, Yahukimo currently managed by church - Jubi
An airport in Bomela Village, Yahukimo currently manage by church – Jubi

Jayapura, Jubi/Antara – At least 285 airports in Papua are still managed by missionary churches and the local communities, Nasiaput Itlay, the head of air transportation, the transportation office of Papua province, stated here on Monday (16/3/2015).

“This is because the airports were constructed by the local communities and the missionary churches,” he pointed out.

Generally, the facilities at the airports are still minimum and limited.

Most of the airports located in remote areas have dirt, gravel, or grass runways and can only serve small-body aircraft such as Cessna, Itlay noted.

Currently, 35 airports are managed by the office’s technical support staff. Of the airports, only Sentani (Jayapura), Merauke, Biak, and Timika can serve wide-body aircraft, for instance Boeing.

The other airports located in Wamena, Dekai, Nabire, Oksibil, and Tanah Merah are only able to serve ATR 72 or ATR 42 aircraft, Itlay added. (*)