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NCAA to audit local airlines, ensure passengers’ safety – Keyamo



The Federal Government has directed the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) to carry out a comprehensive audit of all local airlines in the country.

This followed the suspension of Dana Air after one of the airlines’ planes skidded off the runway at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos.

The Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Festus Keyamo, who featured in a Channels Television’s programme, Politics Today, on Thursday said beyond the suspension of Dana Airlines and the ongoing audit of the airline, all other carriers in the country would be audited to guarantee the safety of passengers and the health of the civil aviation industry.

When quizzed on how long the audit of Dana Airlines would take, he said: “It can be as quick as possible. Like I said, do the right thing, return to business. We must do the right things for the safety of Nigerians.

“Not only them (Dana Airlines), we will carry an audit of all of them, all of them. Let Nigerians be safe when they fly our airlines.”

READ ALSO: Nigerian airlines cry out as rising costs, shrinking demand threaten industry

Keyamo, who assumed office last August, has come under fire in the last 24 hours over what some civil aviation watchdogs described as “external interference” in the autonomy of the NCAA after he directed the agency to suspend Dana Airlines.

Some stakeholders pointed out that it was wrong for the minister to direct the NCAA to suspend an airline and urged to respect the autonomy of the regulator.

Firing back at the critics, Keyamo said the law empowers him to direct the NCAA to do the right thing “in matters of national security.”

“A series of incidents had happened two years ago that the airline is not healthy.

“Let those aviation experts take their wives and children to board that airline that was declared unsafe.

“Would Nigerians have preferred that I keep quiet and be part of the cartel, all in the name of I am not supposed to interfere? What am I doing as minister?” he queried.

By: Babajide Okeowo

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