Nigerian Airlines Back Off After Threatening to Halt Operations

The Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos

The airlines say they will allow a fresh round of dialogue with the government in the hope of reaching an amicable solution.

Airline operators on Sunday announced that they have "acceded" to appeals from the government to withdraw plans to suspend operations from Monday over high cost of jet fuel and other operational costs.

The information was conveyed in a letter signed by Serina Abdulmunaf, president, Airline Operators Association, and jointly signed by the chief executive officers of six domestic airline operators.

"... the AON has acceded to requests to withdraw the action for the time being while we allow for a fresh round of dialogue with the government in the hope of reaching an amicable solution," the letter read in part.

Airline operators had on Friday in a letter addressed to the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, and the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority said they will halt operations from Monday, amidst an astronomical increase in aviation fuel.

In reaction to the letter, the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, pleaded with Nigerian airlines to suspend their planned shutdown of operations from Monday over the increase of cost of aviation fuel from N190 to N700 per litre.

Following the move, four airlines separately pulled out of the plan and said they will continue their operations. The airlines are Ibom Air, Arik, Air Peace, Aero Contractors and Dana.

On Sunday, AON said all airlines have suspensed the plan and operations will no longer be halted.

"We have also reached this decision with the highest consideration for our esteemed customers who have been faced with uncertainty over the last few days and to enable them to have access to travel to their various destinations for the time being during the period of discussions with relevant authorities," the airlines said.

Read the Airlines dull statement below:

AON ACCEDES TO CALLS FROM GOVERNMENT, SUSPENDS ACTION IN GOOD FATE

Lagos; May 8, 2022. The Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) wishes to inform the general public that further to numerous calls from the highest echelons in government with promises to urgently intervene in the crisis being faced by airlines due to the astronomic and continuously rising cost of JetA1, that the AON has acceded to requests to withdraw the action for the time being while we allow for a fresh round of dialogue with government in the hope of reaching an amicable solution.

We have also reached this decision with the highest consideration for our esteemed customers who have been faced with uncertainty over the last few days and to enable them to have access to travel to their various destinations for the time being during the period of discussions with relevant authorities.

In view of the above and in the interest of national economy and security considerations, AON hereby wishes to notify the general public that the earlier announced shutdown of operations on May 9, 2022 is hereby suspended in good faith pending the outcome of hopefully fruitful engagement with the government.

Signed:

Abdulmunaf Yunusa Sarina

President

Jointly signed by:

1. Shehu Wada - Executive Director, Max Air

2. Obiora Okonkwo - Chairman, United Nigeria Airlines

3. Roy Ilegbodu - CEO, Arik Air

4. Abdullahi Mahmood - CEO, Aero Contractors

5. Faisal Abdulmunaf - MD, Azman Air

6. Allen Onyema, Chairman, Air Peace

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