The Airline Operators of Nigeria has threatened to sue the Federal Government over continued multiple entries granted to foreign airlines.
The body also declared that for any foreign airline or investors to invest in the new national carrier, it must deposit at least $200 billion with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to be sure of their seriousness, saying that no airline should use Nigeria as a dumping ground for unused aircraft.
This comes on the heels of the Federal Government insisting that the multiple entries to airlines is good economics to the foreign airlines, but the AON believes that this puts pressure on the foreign exchange for Nigeria.
Speaking at the Q1 2022 Breakfast Business Meeting organised by the Aviation Round Table (ART) with the theme: ‘Economic Implications of Multiple Entry Points by Foreign Airlines Into Nigeria,” Alhaji Yunusa Abdulmunaf, President of AON, said that the body has decided to challenge the government in the court of law of the current policy on multiple entries to airlines is not addressed.
Abdulmunaf who was represented at the occasion by Mr. Allen Onyema, the Vice President of AON, said that the body would in the next few days meet with Sen. Hadi Sirika, the Minister of Aviation to deliberate on the issue.
The AON President lamented that billions of naira are being lost annually to multiple designations granted the foreign carriers and warned that if the policy continued unabated the domestic airlines would die, while the foreign airlines would eventually take over the domestic market.
He insisted that the multiple designations is one of the greatest disservice to the Nigerian economy and its people.
Also, Dr. Gabriel Olowo, the President of ART, decried that foreign airlines are gradually taking over the domestic market with continuous approvals for multiple entries for foreign airlines.
“The damages of multiple entries into Nigeria is huge. Britain for instance has 21 flights into Nigeria weekly. European Unions have 43 frequencies every week into Nigeria. Also the Middle East has 56 flights weekly into multiple entries into Nigeria.