Paphos mayor Phedonas Phedonos has called on the government to address the growing problems encountered by travellers at Paphos airport, especially as far as waiting times and queues are concerned.

In a post shared on Facebook on Sunday, Phaedonos said that “chaos once again was experienced at Paphos airport.”

He further expressed “growing apprehensions about extensive queues, not only at arrivals but also at departures.”

“For the past five years, the airport has been entangled in a contractual commitment dating back to 2006, involving a 25-year concession agreement with a private company,” the mayor said.

“This agreement mandated that the company invest €150 million in the airports of Larnaca and Paphos. Regrettably, this commitment remains unfulfilled to this day, as the company says it allegedly made improvements to airports that increased capacity. But the picture we see proves that what the company says are theories to dismiss its responsibilities.

“Furthermore, the agreement stipulates that no later than nine years before the agreement’s expiration, which is May 2022, Phase B of the project should have commenced, irrespective of any improvements made. Why have the Phase B works not yet started?” Phaedonos asked.

The mayor then quipped that the answer lies in a deal the company struck with the finance ministry, which stipulates that Phase B would only commence as part of a comprehensive agreement package encompassing a 5.5-year extension of the agreement and the satisfaction of the company’s requirements related to Covid-19 and the contentious Tympou airport.

“Thankfully, the auditor-general has intervened, and recent developments indicate that the government is now addressing the matter in accordance with the audit office’s recommendations. This includes the immediate start of Phase B works without any extensions or further delays. Valuable time has already been lost,” the mayor said.

“The huge increase in passenger traffic is bringing chaos at the airport. We call on the government to speed up procedures and finally put an end to the suffering of Cypriot travellers and foreign tourists using Paphos Airport.”