South Sudan is celebrating yet another remarkable feat by Capt Aluel Bol Aluenge, the country’s first commercial pilot who has risen to the position of Captain while wishing her the best in her aviation career. Aluenge was recently made a Captain flying for Delta Air Lines.
The 34-year-old first made news in 2011 when she completed her aviation training in the United States, with support from the South Sudan government.
Aluenge flew for Ethiopian Airlines, and Fly Dubai. Seven years ago when she finished flying school she said, “I feel extremely delighted especially at the mere thought of achieving my dream. As a child growing up, I always wanted to be a pilot and my late dad made sure that he did all that it takes to make me succeed.”
Congratulatory messages have been pouring in from many proud South Sudanese and Aluenge’s family members. Responding to a congratulatory message on the appointment, Aluenge wrote on Twitter: “Thank you sister For your support. I am greatly humbled. To God be the glory @modernemeid”
Aluenge was a first class pilot at the United Arab Emirates-based, Fly Dubai which operates daily flights to Juba.
Aluenge had once tried to be a model when she was 16, both in New York and London. Her fashion ambition however didn’t work out. She was at the Florida Memorial University where she majored in international business management before switching to aeronautical science. In a year she got her commercial pilot’s license.
With the recent news of more countries on the continent opening up their airspace, a move that would see cheaper airfares between African countries, we certainly hope more opportunities will arise particularly for talented African women aviators.