Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika

The Federal Government of Nigeria, yesterday, approved the leasing of three Airbus and Boeing aircraft for the commencement of operations of the national carrier, Nigeria Air. The development was revealed by the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, during the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting in Abuja.

The Minister disclosed that the airline would begin with domestic routes and then expand to regional and intercontinental operations. He however declined to comment on the actual date of commencement of operations, saying, “We will announce commencement soon.”

He had earlier pegged the takeoff date for July 2022 though the search for bidders to drive the public-private venture was still ongoing. In May, the ministry extended the bidding process by one-month, to end on June 10.

Recently, the airline acquired its Air Transport License ( ATL) and got approval to run for a period of five years, starting from June 3, 2022 till June 2, 2027. It  is on the verge of getting an Air Operators’ Certificate (AOC) once it scales the five step certification hurdle, one of which is a demonstration flight with its aircraft, which according to civil aviation regulations must be three upon certification.