Amid mounting opposition by Domestic Airline Operators in Nigeria under the aegis of the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON), a Nigeria Air aircraft earlier seen at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport in Ethiopia has landed at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.
Video footage making the rounds on social media platforms showed the Nigeria Air aircraft with a white background with the ‘Nigeria Air’ inscription on it sitting pretty at the Abuja airport on the last working day of this administration.
This development comes barely two days after the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, confirmed that the National Carrier, Nigeria Air’s aircraft will arrive in the country on Friday ahead of the commencement of operations.
Sirika, on Wednesday, May 24, 2023, confirmed that the aircraft for the National Carrier, Nigeria Air, would arrive in the country on Friday ahead of the commencement of operations.
The Aviation Minister had, during an interview with Channels Television, promised that the aircraft would be unveiled in Nigerian colours in fulfillment of all the promises made by the administration in the aviation sector.
He noted that the only incomplete item is the Aerotropolis, which is the airport city and is 60% complete.
The Minister, however, pointed out that the groundwork for the Aerotropolis has been completed, with work on the airport expected to be concluded by the incoming administration.
Meanwhile, Airline Operators of Nigeria have faulted plans by the outgoing Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, to launch the operations of Nigeria Air despite a restraining court order on the controversial project.
As a result, AON lawyers have written a letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, asking him to stop the minister’s attempt to “circumvent the court orders on Friday being the last working day of this administration and possibly to cover up the various infractions of Nigerian laws, among others.”
The local carriers also said they would sue the minister for contempt of court for planning to launch the carrier despite the court order stopping the project.