- Senate Asks FG to Save Indigenous Airlines From Collapse
The Senate on Wednesday said indigenous airlines could go into extinction if spirited efforts were not put in place to halt designation of multiple routes within Nigeria to foreign Airlines.
The upper chamber has, therefore, summoned the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transport, and heads of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority and the Federal Aviation Authority of Nigeria to explain why foreign airlines were allowed to fly multiple routes within the country.
It also directed foreign airlines to provide statistics of Nigerians in their employment with a view to encouraging them to employ more Nigerians and partner indigenous airlines in the country.
The red chamber further urged the Federal Government to give indigenous airlines necessary support and protection to keep them afloat.
It also invited the indigenous airlines’ operators to explain to the Senate the challenges they were facing in the aviation industry in the country as well as the way forward.
The resolutions were sequel to a motion sponsored by Senator Ifeanyi Ubah.
Ubah lamented that foreign airlines engaged in domestic flights to the detriment of local airlines.
He noted that it was only in Nigeria that such practice happened, saying that other countries had laws that protect their domestic airlines.
He said, “Foreign airlines are now designated to multiple routes within Nigeria.
“For example, Ethiopian Airlines operates in five cities namely: Enugu, Kano, Kaduna, Abuja and Lagos; Turkish Airlines operates in these cities: Abuja, Lagos and Port-Harcourt.
“Emirates Airlines operates two frequencies daily into Lagos and one to Abuja.”
In their contributions, Senate Minority leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe, and his deputy, Emmanuel Bwacham, decried the pathetic situation in the domestic aviation sector.
Abaribe noted that Nigerians had the highest number of private jets, wondering how it became difficult for commercial airlines to survive.