Airline operators ask Buhari to stop Nigeria Air’s flag off

As the Federal Government concludes plans to fly in some of the aircraft in Nigeria Eagle livery, Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON), the umbrella body of some airlines in the country have petitioned President Muhammadu Buhari over the airline and asked the President to stop the airline.

The operators raised a storm about plans by the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika to flag off operations in Nigeria despite restraining court orders on the controversial project.

The Minister had on Wednesday said that the aircraft for the national carrier would arrive in the country today (Friday) ahead of the commencement of operations.

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He assured that the aircraft would be unveiled in Nigeria’s colours in fulfillment of all the promises made by the Buhari administration in the aviation sector.

He, however, noted that the only incomplete item is the aerotropolis, which is the airport city and is 60 percent complete.

According to him, the groundwork had been completed and is looking to conclude work on the airport city by the next administration.

But in a letter dated May 24th by its solicitors, Nureini Jimoh (SAN) Chambers and addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari, the operators described the move as an attempt to circumvent the court orders on Friday being the last working day of the administration and possibly to cover up the various infractions of Nigerian laws among others.

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The operators alleged that Sirika chose the last working day of the President Buhari administration to bring two aircraft in contravention of the court order urging the President to stop the minister’s action.

They noted that bringing in two aircraft for Nigeria Air, ‘is a clever way to violate court orders’.

President Buhari was reminded that the suit was filed to question the ‘shady deals, deliberate infractions of the Nigerian laws and self-enrichment/corruption mainly by the Ministry of Aviation over Nigeria Air project”.


In the said suit, the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos which was presided by Justice Ambrose Lewis Allagoa granted three separate court orders of injunctions in the terms contained restraining taking any step in relation to the Nigeria Air project.

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Wole Shadare