Leadership (Abuja)

Nigeria: Mixed Reactions Trail Dana Air's Resumption Today

Photo: Dana airline
Dana airline

Mixed reactions have followed the resumption of Dana Air's flight operations. The airline is scheduled to undertake its inaugural flight from Lagos to Abuja today.

While some passengers have said it would take them a while before they could muster the courage to fly the airline, others say they would still fly the airline despite its aircraft accident which resulted in the federal government suspending its operations seven months ago.

According to a frequent traveller who identified himself as Wole, aircraft accidents do happen and that is not reason enough for the government to suspend the operations of the airline. He said even world-class airlines like Air France, British Airways and others might have had one aircraft accident or the other, but they still continued with their flight operations while investigations were still ongoing.

He said: "At least, preliminary investigations did not indict the airline, but the accident was due to human error. If Dana Air had been indicted by the Accident Investigation Bureau, I would not fly the airline. As it is, if I have any business to attend to in Abuja or to any destination where the airline flies to, and Dana is the next available flight, I will definitely fly it."

However, one Mrs Rose Ikem, who said she has a phobia for flying, but still flies because it is the fastest and safest means of travelling, said it would take a while before she could fly the airline. She said she would want to wait a while for the airline to once again prove that it can operate safely before she can fly the airline.

Some of the car hire service operators who spoke with our correspondent said they were looking forward to the airline's resumption of operation. They were of the view that the airline's resumption of service would boost their operations, which some of them said have suffered following the airline's aircraft accident. "Dana brings a lot of passengers to MMA2," said one Bisiriyu.

A source from the airline told our correspondent that Dana Air had put things in place to ensure a hitch-free service, even as it had dispatched some of its staff to Abuja in preparation for the inaugural service. He however said they expect that there would be apathy among passengers within the first few days of the airline's commencement of service.

"But we expect to build the confidence of the passengers with time, because we have taken all the necessary steps required by the regulatory authority and the minister of aviation who has given us the go-ahead to start operations," said the source. He stated that though the airline is resuming operations, they are not expecting to start with full load, because "there will apathy among some passengers".

Dana Air had satisfied all the safety measures as required by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) which reissued it with an Air Operator's Certificate (AOC) on December 5, last year.

Though the airline had slated its inaugural service for today, its first flight after the aircraft accident of June 3, 2012, left the MMA2 Terminal at about 4.45pm yesterday.

Tony Usdiamen, spokesman for the airline, explained that the flight was "just a positioning flight" that had on board some of its staff who will be resuming work in Abuja.

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