· Receives committee’s report
The Honourable minister of Aviation, Osita Chidoka has ordered the revocation of Flight Operations Clearance Certificate (FOCC) and Maintenance Clearance Certificate (MCC) of all foreign registered privately owned aircraft operating commercial charters, instead of their NCAA authorization for private (Not for hire or reward)operations within Nigeria.
Chidoka also said civil penalties of $100,000 (One Hundred Thousand USD) must be paid by the operators before the release of their aircraft.
Continuing, the minister said, effective March 1, 2015, all foreign registered private category aircraft that are listed on the OpSpec Part G of some Air Operator Certificate (AOC) holders, must be removed from the status by NCAA. Consequently, the aircraft operations will remain grounded, until NCAA approves an alternative operational status for the aircraft.
The Aviation minister gave this order today in his office on the occasion of the formal presentation of the report of the Ministerial Committee on Foreign Registered, Privately operated Aircraft operations in Nigeria, to him.
The Committee chaired by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Aviation Reforms, Capt. Victor Iriobe was inaugurated by the minister as part of his transformational strides to move the aviation sector to the next level.
The Committee was saddled with the responsibility of investigating the operations of all foreign registered, privately owned aircraft issued with Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Flight Operations Clearance Certificate (FOCC) and Maintenance Clearance Certificate(MCC) operating commercial charters , instead of their NCAA authorization for private (Not for hire or reward) operations within Nigeria.
The Committee was also to review the operations of all aircraft under Air Operator Certificate (AOC) OpSpecs Part G, with a view to ensuring their adherence to the relevant Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations and to advise the NCAA and the Honourable Minister of Aviation on relevant sanctions for violations.
Earlier, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Aviation Reforms, Capt. Victor Iriobe, giving the report of the Committee, said the illegal operations in the aviation industry have both safety and commercial implications for NCAA and the Federal Government of Nigeria.
Iriobe added,’’ the alleged perpetrators are not only depriving the Federal Government of necessary revenue by evading all taxes and statutory charges, but are also in violation of relevant Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations, which has serious safety and security implications.
This is because aircraft configuration, crew training, maintenance and Insurance for private category operations are not as stringent as those in commercial operations, in accordance with Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations and the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Standard and Recommended Practices’’.
The Committee according to Victor Iriobe , identified among other observations, series of systematic challenges in NCAA and NAMA that hindered the implementation of effective surveillance and enforcement of relevant regulations. These include, but not limited to management interference, poor inter-agencies’ communication, lack of complementary agencies cooperation and inadequate technical manpower.
The Committee made a total of ten findings and sixteen recommendations in the report that was presented to the minister.
Capt. Victor Iriobe concluding the presentation of the report said that it will require bold political will and strict adherence to the Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations, together with the 2013 National Civil Aviation Policy and strict enforcement oversight by the industry Regulator, NCAA and the synergized will of the leadership of all stakeholders in the aviation industry to put things right.
The minister after receiving the report , appreciated the committee members and said that the recommendations will be carried out to the letter without fear or favour, saying that the political will was there and that the president has already consented to the reforms in aviation industry.
Chidoka said that everybody must operate within the rules of the industry and that whoever default, will face the penalty.
Iyogun Asobumeh Sunday
Principal Information Officer
For: AD (Press)
Ministry of Aviation