Connect with us


We chartered Ethiopian aircraft to unveil Nigerian Air – MD



The acting Managing Director of Nigeria Air, Capt. Dapo Olumide, has said that they chartered an aircraft belonging to Ethiopian Airlines to  unveil  that flew in with the logo of Nigeria Air, Daily Post reports.

It was reported by the publication earlier that Ethiopian Airlines owns the Boeing 737-800 series aircraft flown into Abuja from Addis Ababa, capital of Ethiopia, on May 26.

According to the report, the aircraft took off from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, at 9:55am on May 26 and landed at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, at 12:43 p.m.

When it landed, Hadi Sirika, Minister of Aviation, stated that after “a very long, tedious, daunting and difficult path”, the project had taken off.

The minister then the aircraft with registration ET-APL at the General Aviation Terminal of the Abuja airport.

But investigations revealed that the aircraft flew for its original airline up till four days before it was brought to Nigeria and that it embarked on a trip from Addis Ababa to Tel Aviv in Israel, according to the flight history.

Flightradar, the popular flight tracking website, said the aircraft operated between Tel Aviv and Mogadishu, Somalia, still on May 21, 2023.

Read Also: What I’ll do if Tinubu offers me appointment – Wike

When he appeared before the Senate Committee on Aviation on Tuesday, Olumide said Nigeria Air had yet to secure an operating licence for full flight operations, saying that the processes were still at the early stages.

Olumide said the aircraft was used pending the completion of the processes required for the operation of the airline.

He said his mandate was to secure an air operating certificate for the airline not necessarily to operate it but to secure a licence to fly.

“The aircraft that came in and left was a legitimate charter flight. Anyone of us here if we have a destination wedding in Senegal, we can charter an aircraft.”

“You don’t need to have a licence to do that, you just charter an aircraft, an aircraft you paid for it, it will be brought here, take your passengers and off you go.

Read Also: Economic revival will happen after insecurity is tackled; Tinubu

“And that is what we did. But in this case, it was to unveil the logo of Nigeria Air. Ever since 2018, all you have ever seen about Nigeria Air were pictures, drawings not the real aircraft, and we thought it was time to show what the real aircraft will look like also to let shareholders see. We have institutional investors, they are not in aviation but they are putting their money for 10 to 15 years, so they need to see what the actual aircraft will look like.

“So we brought it in here to show them what the aircraft will look like, then the social media dimension came into it.

“For us to get that licence which is my mandate, we must among other things have three aircraft before the NCAA will give us a licence and those three aircraft must be Nigerian registered aircraft.

“So when this aircraft came on a chartered flight, everybody said we have launched Nigeria Air, there are learned people in the aviation industry who could have countered that when social media came out, but they chose not to.”

Earlier, the Chairman of the Committee, Sen. Biodun Olujimi said it was unfortunate that the former Minister of Aviation failed to involve the committee and other stakeholders in the Air Nigeria project.

“To state the obvious, he failed to carry members of the Committee along in virtually all ramifications despite the degree of respect members accorded him any time he was invited for meetings.”


Click to comment

Leave a Reply