Captain Feriel Ally of Air Services Limited (ASL) made history on Friday by qualifying as the first female Cessna Grand Caravan pilot in Guyana, a release from ASL said.
Ally, daughter of Guyana’s aviation pioneer Yacoob Mazaharally, began her aviation career in 1989 when she obtained her private pilots licence. She returned to Guyana and built her hours flying the Cessna 172 and 206, ferrying supplies into the remote and challenging airstrips of the timber concessions owned by A Mazaharally and Sons Limited, the parent company of Air Services Limited.
She then obtained her commercial pilot’s licence in 1998 in the United States. She qualified on the Britten Norman Islander twin-engine aircraft – the aircraft of choice for the tourism and corporate sectors – and became a fast favourite with the corporate executives who would request that she be their pilot.
The Cessna Grand Caravan aircraft she is now qualified to fly is a 13-seater turbo-prop aircraft, which is in demand due to its greater speed, silence and seating capacity. It is also a favourite in the industry because of its reliability, better fuel efficiency and greater passenger and cargo capacity. Carrying on the ASL tradition of commitment to community development and matched by unbroken service to the residents of Region Eight, Captain Ally has become a well-known shuttle captain in what was a male-dominated niche of aviation. ASL has invested heavily in its Mahdia hangar from which over 300,000 lbs per month of cargo and passengers are shuttled from Mahdia to the challenging interior airstrips.
Captain Ally is also fully qualified in aviation management and worked as deputy manager of the airport operations at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport, followed by many years in the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), the industry’s regulatory body, as an aviation inspector.
ASL’s Operations Manager Annette Arjoon-Martins said, “ASL is extremely proud of Captain Feriel’s achievements and celebrates the fact that it has the first female Caravan pilot in its crew. This milestone will be captured when celebrating 100 years of aviation in Guyana in 2013.”
Republished from Guyana Times