Why Nigeria Air cannot fly now – NCAA

Going by the latest information from the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), the Nigeria Air recently inaugurated by Aviation Minister, Hadi Sirika, may not take off for now.

NCAA, in a statement, said that the promoters of the airline — the Federal Government and Ethiopian Airlines — did not go beyond one out of the five steps required for the issuance of the all-important Air Operators’ Certificate (AOC).

According to regulatory requirements, any start-up carrier billed for scheduled domestic service ought to scale through the five processes before AOC could be issued by NCAA.

An Aviation expert told our correspondent yesterday that there are five phases involved in getting an AOC.

Stage one is the pre-application phase where the NCAA will appoint a certification team and process the pre-application statement of intent form (AC-OPS 001).
This is the stage the Nigeria Air promoters got to but did not proceed further before the time(one week) limit expired.

The source said since the promoters of Nigeria Air did not go beyond stage one of the application process before its expiration, it has to begin afresh.

This, according to him, informed the NCAA’s letter to Nigeria Air management that they cannot proceed to the second stage without certain documents.

The letter marked NCAA/DOLTS/GEN/Vol. III/16123 and titled “Re: Request to proceed to phase two of AOC certification,” the regulatory agency was dated June 2, 2023.

It reads: “The authority is in receipt of your letter dated 25th May 2023 on the above subject matter. Quite contrary to our earlier letter of 16th May 2023 which enumerated the documents to be submitted with the formal application form OPS 002, your letter of request to proceed to phase two has no inclusion of a formal application form and the necessary documents referenced in the formal application form.

“The certification process cannot progress to phase two without these required documents. Please be reminded that your post holders’ letters of commitment to Nigeria Air have a tenure of three months and as such expires now.”

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