The Airline Operators of Nigeria, AON, has backtracked on its decision last Friday for members to shut down operations from tomorrow, Monday 9th May 2022 until further notice.
A media statement from the AON claimed that the intervention of well-meaning Nigerians in and out of government and the promise to intervene in the geometrical increase of aviation fuel compelled members to put on hold its earlier promise to deny Nigerians air transport.
AON media statement stated thus, “further to numerous calls from the highest echelons in government with promises to urgently intervene in the crises being faced by airlines due to the astronomic and continuously rising cost of JetA1, that the AON has acceded to requests to withdraw the action for the time being”.
The operators expressed optimism that the fresh round of dialogue that will begin will be able to bring about an amicable settlement to the vexed issue of upwardly mobile JET A1 pump price which has begun for a while.
It also made reference that the AON took cognizance of its esteemed air travellers who had shown anxious concern via all the social media about their fate in commuting within the country with the fastest and safest means of transportation- air transport- for their numerous business transactions.
The media statement was signed by seven members of the association including its President, Alhaji (Dr.) Abdulmunaf Yunusa Sarina, added that the nation’s interest was paramount in the resolve to put on hold the work to rule earlier scheduled to take off tomorrow.
The statement reads thus; “In view of the above and in the interest of national economy and security considerations, AON hereby wishes to notify the general public that the earlier announced shutdown of operations on 9th May 2022, is hereby suspended in good fate pending the outcome of hopefully fruitful engagement with the government”.
AVIATION MINISTRY LAUDS AON FOR RESOLVING TO MAINTAIN ITS SCHEDULED OPERATIONS
The Ministry of Aviation has commended the Airline Operators of Nigeria, AON, for its decision not to ground aeroplanes as earlier planned to take effect from tomorrow, Monday 9th May 2022.
The statement by the ministry extolled the magnanimity of the domestic operators and commended the patriotic fervour often exhibited by AON members in the face of the unfavourable oil market.
The ministry thus stated, “we believe that members of the Association are patriots who have continued to bear the brunt of an unfavourable oil market for which we salute their doggedness”.
The statement further said, “It is gratifying that members of the Association have started reviewing the decision to withdraw flight services, with Ibom Air Green Africa Airlines, Arik Air, Dana and others confirming that they will carry on with their normal flight schedules. We hope that other members will consider the expected impact on businesses and individuals and review their decision”.
According to the statement from the Aviation Ministry and signed by Special Assistant to the Minister on Public Affairs, James Odaudu, it disclosed that “the Honourable Minister at various times personally took members of the Association to engage with Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to sort out issues of access to Foreign Exchange (FOREX) for their operations, and also the NNPC to exploit ways of ensuring the availability of Aviation fuel (JET A1) through importation or from the major Marketers”.
It further noted that “members of the Association were also considered for, and given Bail-out funds to the tune of N4 billion during the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure that they remained afloat. This was without prejudice to the fact that most of them were heavily indebted to Aviation agencies (as they still are)”, the media release by the ministry stated.
Source : Nigeria Transport Hub