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Airline operators ask Virgin Nigeria to obey FG on relocation

Posted by By UCHE USIM and FRIDAY NWOSU on 2008/02/12 | Views: 844 |

Airline operators ask Virgin Nigeria to obey FG on relocation


The decision of the federal government to relocate domestic operations from the Murtala Muhammed Airport Lagos to the newly constructed domestic terminal (MMA2) and the General Aviation Terminal (GAT) is based on national security, Secretary General of Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON), Capt. Muhammed Joji has said.

The decision of the federal government to relocate domestic operations from the Murtala Muhammed Airport Lagos to the newly constructed domestic terminal (MMA2) and the General Aviation Terminal (GAT) is based on national security, Secretary General of Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON), Capt. Muhammed Joji has said.

Briefing aviation journalist in Lagos, Friday, Joji said the decision was taken after intense negotiation between AON and the management of MMA2, stressing that the first to move were Chanchangi Airline, Aero Contractor and IRS Airlines.

He said all demands made by AON were met by the management of MMA2 pointing out that some of their charges are even lower than the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) operated by the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN).

“The reason for relocation of all airlines was cited as national security. All airlines complied.
The first to relocate to MMA2 after intense negotiation between AON and the management of MMA2 were Chanchangi Airline, Aero Contractor, and later joined by IRS Airline. All our demands were met by the MM2 management. Some charges are even lower than the old MMI operated by FAAN. However, exigencies of these times occasioned by security issues in and around MMIA, Lagos and NAIA Abuja dictate and compel government to relocate the local airlines operating from international to the local wing of both airports”.

Joji pointed out that issues of national security cannot be compromised in the aviation industry, adding that national security is not only confined to Nigeria but a global concern.
The AON spokesman said the US government enacted various laws to protect its citizens and its aviation industry in the wake of September 11 terrorist attacks that jolted the country, stating that everybody complied with those laws.

Joji frowned at the situation where laws made by the federal government will be flouted by any airline operator. He said in 1992, Nigerian Airways, the national carrier was ordered by the federal government to stop operating domestic flights from the international airport of Lagos for security reasons, stating that the directive was immediately complied with.

He said there is an increasing number of international airlines that are flying in out of Lagos MMIA adding that domestic airlines operating from MMIA will erode the very parking, arrival hall and office space reserved for those foreign airlines. He said this will
inadvertently limit the facilities at MMIA



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