Namibian delegation delayed in wet Johannesburg

10 Nov 2016 18:50pm
WINDHOEK, 10 NOV (NAMPA) – A Namibian government delegation to a meeting in Ghana was Wednesday held up for two hours at Johannesburg’s OR Tambo International Airport.
The delegation, lead by Deputy Minister of Works and Transport, James Sankwasa arrived safe in Accra Thursday morning.
Sankwasa and delegates were on their way to Accra for a Namibia-Ghana Joint Permanent Commission meeting that started Thursday and is expected to end on Saturday.
Speaking to Nampa from Ghana on Thursday afternoon, Sankwasa said the torrential rain Wednesday evening caused flash floods around the South African airport, meaning no flights could take off or land at the facility.
“I was supposed to connect to Ghana at 18:10 but only flew out at 20:00. We were just seated in the plane for two hours waiting for the weather to calm down.”
He said even after taking off, they experienced heavy turbulence.
Sankwasa was impressed at how airport officials handled the situation.
“Clearly there was a readiness programme in place, because if they did not have one, that situation would have been disastrous.”
Social media was Wednesday night and Thursday morning swamped with pictures of the flash-floods that had cars floating, some upside down, and people stranded all along the highway leading up to the airport.
Media reports have it that Airports Company South Africa confirmed the knock-on flight delays due to the storm and that access roads to the airport were flooded beyond visibility.
Flights to OR Tambo International Airport have been diverted and the travel hub had received 90 millimetres of rain.
Sankwasa is due back in Namibia on Sunday.