- The Senate has ordered the Central Bank of Nigeria to recover a loan of N35.5 billion from Jimoh Ibrahim. The sum came from the Aviation Intervention Fund and was intended for Air Nigeria.
- The Senate again asked the Federal Government to revoke Dana Air’s AOC and to fire the DG of the NCAA for negligence of duty.
- A few images of the clearing of stored aircraft at Lagos Airport. A DHL B727F and NICON Airways B727 are the first aircraft to be dismantled.
- FAAN announced that it will construct twelve cargo terminals across the country to boost the export of perishable goods.
- FAAN has accepted six refurbished fire tenders. Jalingo Airport is currently the only airport in Nigeria without a fire tender.
- Runway lighting will be installed at Enugu, Yola and Owerri, and these airports will be open for night operations from 24 March 2013 onwards.
- The promised duty waiver on aircraft and aircraft parts is yet to be implemented by the Federal Government.
- Ticket prices have dropped on domestic routes in the recent weeks, because of increased supply.
- Arik Air quit its Abuja-Katsina route.
- Arik Air issued a RFP to finance four Bombardier jets.
- ExecuJet Nigeria in Lagos has been named a Line Maintenance Facility (LMF) for Bombardier business jets.
- VistaJet asked the support of the Federal Government to expand its activities in Nigeria. Apparently, the charter airline currently operates on the AOC of SkyPower Express.
- Chanchangi’s second B737-300 (5N-BMC) will re-join the airline’s fleet shortly. The airlines also hopes to add two more B737 Classics before the summer.
- The Minister of Aviation disclosed that the launch of a new national carrier is in its final stage of approval.
- FAAN has begun to dismantle derelict aircraft at Lagos Airport, meanwhile an entrepreneur wants to collect abandoned aircraft to set up an Aviation Museum in Nigeria.
- The Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has announced it will enforce the new Passenger Bill of Rights to make sure that all airlines comply to the new rules protecting air travellers.
- Gombe State Government has struck a new deal with Arik Air to increase the current five-weekly service between Gombe and Abuja to a daily service.
- Med-View Airline has suspended its Lagos-Owerri service after just one month.
- AirFrance will offer more seats on its daily flights from Paris to Abuja and Port Harcourt per 31 March 2013, changing from A332 to B772 equipment. The airline also serves Lagos daily from Paris with an A332.
- The Nigerian Air Force has acquired a former SAS B737-505 (to be registered NAF 916; ex-LN-BRV). The aircraft is currently at Istanbul for maintenance.
- PICOMMS lost the feud with NIMASA and will be disolved by the Federal Government. The Nigerian Navy will take over the assets of PICOMMS, including a B350, DA42 and Cessna 206.
- An article on the Biafran Air Force (shared by Alaba).
- Nigerian Air Traffic Controllers in the US for further training.
- The foundation of the new airport in Bauchi State was laid by the State Governor on 25 January 2013. The second airport in the state should be ready before the end of the year.
- A couple of pictures showing the ongoing renovation work on the Owerri Airport terminal emerged on the net. Apparently all the domestic airports – Benin, Port Harcourt and Enugu – are getting a very similar look.
Med-View Airline has uploaded schedules for its new daily Abuja-Yola and Lagos-Owerri service:
- LOS-QOW VL2110 07:30-08:45
- QOW-LOS VL2111 09:30-10:45
- ABV-YOL VL2102 10:30-11:40 (Weekdays)
- ABV-YOL VL2102 11:00-12:10 (Saturday)
- ABV-YOL VL2104 13:55-15:05 (Sunday)
- YOL-ABV VL2103 12:30-13:40 (Weekdays)
- YOL-ABV VL2103 13:00-14:10 (Saturday)
- YOL-ABV VL2105 15:45-16:55 (Sunday)
The flights to Yola originate from Lagos, meaning that passengers can travel from Lagos to Yola with a stopover in Abuja.
Med-View Airline carried 32,956 passengers in the first two months of its operations. A B737-800 (CS-TQU) is wet-leased from EuroAtlantic Airways, and a second B737-800 will join the airline’s fleet in March 2013. Med-View will then commence flights to Kano and Sokoto.
A quiet week:
- The Abuja Gateway Consortium filed a suit against the Federal Government. The consortium won a bid in 2006 to develop Abuja Airport, but the contract was annulled and is now awarded to Chinese investors.
- Kebbi State has approved a sum of N13.6 billion to upgrade the state-owned airstrip at Ambursa to the status of international airport. The expansion of the runway and construction of a new terminal will be done by CGC and should be ready in March 2013.
- A Qatar Airways A330 coming from Doha made an emergency landing at Lagos Airport on 29 September, after discovering a minor landing gear problem.
- Hawker Beechcraft sold 26 aircraft in Nigeria between 2007 and 2011 (11 percent of their African market).
- The Nigerian Navy acquired a Bell 206 Jet Ranger (NN 10) for training purposes.
- CHC is planning to re-enter the Nigerian market. It will operate AW139/S76 helicopters in partnership with Jagal.
- SkyBird Air is not only operating three Do328Jets but also a Gulfstream GIV (probably 5N-BOD; ex-5N-FGP).
- Dana Air has begun test flights ahead of their resumption of commercial services. It seems the airline will retain its corporate identity.
- FirstNation Airways appears to have resumed flights between Lagos and Abuja with one A320, although flights cannot be booked through their website. Associated Aviation also continues to operate scheduled flights to Akure and Benin. This article analysing the decrease of capacity and increase of air fares over the past months, however, claims that both airlines are currently not operating any flights.
- The Federal Government has replaced the top management of various aviation agencies.
- Overall, the volume of air cargo traffic in Nigeria grew in 2011, but designated cargo airports such as Ilorin and Owerri didn’t record a single cargo flight last year.
- A new issue of Arik Wings is available online.
A couple of short updates:
- Nigeria and India are planning to renegotiate their bilateral air service agreement, while Nigeria and Trinidad and Tobago may also enter into a BASA.
- Air Algerie wants to start flights from Algiers to Lagos.
- Bombardier as well as Boeing are considering to help Nigeria develop a MRO facility.
- Air Nigeria’s repossessed B737s have been flown out of Lagos.
- The Imo State Government intends to build a new airport terminal at Owerri Airport through a Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) agreement.
- Taraba State is planning to build an airstrip on the Mambilla plateau. It would be the second airstrip to be constructed by the State Governor, who also has an airstrip in his home village of Suntai. The state capital’s Jalingo Airport, however, is not yet operational for commercial flights nor has Air Taraba taken of yet.
- The presentation given by the SG of the NCAA at the International Helicopter Safety Symposium 2011.
- Does anyone know more about Private Flyers International? It’s a private flying club, based at Kaduna, operating a fleet consisting of a Cessna 172, a Cessna 206, a Piper PA-23 Aztec (5N-BKE), a Jabiru 430, and a Cessna Caravan.
- The airlines are expected to raise their domestic air fares.
- The Minister of Aviation wants to invite foreign companies to audit the domestic airlines. Experts complain that the Ministry is neglecting the air safety projects.
- FAAN has announced that it will remove 65 unserviceable aircraft from various airports in the country.
This is the last update to be posted on this blog.
- Arik Air lost the impounded A330-200 (5N-EIA) for good. The owner, Amentum Capital, is offering the aircraft for lease again.
- Arik Air formally withdrew the B737-300s (5N-MJA/MJB) from its fleet. One of the B737-700s (5N-MJF) is also taped up and stored at Norwich. A Dash 8-Q400 is currently at Maastricht for maintenance.
- This is the design for the proposed Arik Air Aviation Centre, Lagos. It is unlikely that the terminal/hangar will be built soon, as Arik Air is in financial dire straits and because of the ongoing struggle over the ownership of the GA Terminal at Lagos Airport. Click here for more information and images on the Neumann website.
- Arik Air got approval from the US authorities to start services to Houston. The airline announced an non-stop Houston-Lagos route on its Facebook page. The new routing of its US flight will probably become LOS-JFK-IAH-LOS.
- Air Nigeria will lease a seventeen year old B737-400 from ILFC. The aircraft (5N-VNM), still stored at Istanbul, has slightly smaller titles than the other Air Nigeria aircraft. One of Air Nigeria’s B733s (5N-VNC) has been stored at Shannon for months.
- FirstNation Airways took delivery of three A320s (5N-FNA/5N-FNB/5N-FNC), which are now stored at Lagos Airport. The successor of Bellview Airlines aims to start scheduled services this month between Abuja, Kano, Lagos and Port Harcourt. However, the airline might be forced to delay the start of its operations, because it still has to obtain an AOC and its aircraft may be grounded for outstanding debts from Bellview Airlines era.
- This is the first picture of the G550 (5N-FGW) that will soon join the Presidential Air Fleet of the NAF. A second Dassault Falcon 7X (5N-FGV) will follow later this year.
- One of DANA’s Do328s (5N-IEP) was spotted in Bournemouth with an all-white livery.
- This is an election promise made by the governor of Imo State: a new Owerri Airport. The State Government financed the failed Air Midwest project in the past.
- Hangar8, a UK charter company, opened a fixed-base operation (FBO) in Lagos and Abuja.
- The NCAA has inspected all classic B737s in Nigeria. Initially, the B737-300 freighter (5N-BMA) of Axiom Air, operated on Skypower Express’ AOC, was grounded.
- An untitled Nigerian registered B727 freighter (5N-BNQ) was spotted in Poland, probably to pick up election material. The aircraft, registered 5N-BNQ, is owned by Millennium Travel & Tours Ltd, but was operated under Associated Aviation flight code.
- A Hawker 800XP was registered 5N-BNM in Lanseria and is operated by SkyJet Aviation (Barbedos Group).
- Chanchangi Airlines announced that its B737-300s (5N-BMB/BMC) are undergoing heavy maintenance in Belgrade and Johannesburg and may return into service soon. The airline now operates two B733s wet-leased from Jordan Aviation.
- The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority officially commissioned the new Flight Tracking Operations Command Centre in Lagos last month.
- The Federal Government plans to build a new domestic terminal at Abuja.
- IRS Airlines hopes to add more F100s to its fleet this year.
- SkyBird Air took delivery of its first Dornier 328DBJ in February 2011.
- One of the NAF G222s carrying election material made a hard landing at Abuja Airport on Friday, 8 April 2011. Meanwhile, a Mi35 helicopter also deployed for the election made an emergency landing in Bayelsa State.
- The Nigerian Air Force inaugurated two Augusta A109 helicopters at the 305 Flying Training School in Enugu. The helicopters are meant for the training of military and civilian pilots.
- The Nigerian Air Force announced it will organise an Air Expo in 2012.
Air Nigeria’s new scheduled flights from Lagos to Owerri, effective the 15th of July:
- VK 65 LOS QOW 10:50-12:05 (Weekdays)
- VK 65 LOS QOW 11:40-12:55 (Saturdays)
- VK 65 LOS QOW 11:35-12:05 (Sundays)
- VK 64 QOW LOS 12:40-13:50 (Weekdays)
- VK 64 QOW LOS 13:30-14:45 (Saturdays)
- VK 64 QOW LOS 13:25-14:40 (Sundays)
Some bits of news over the past week:
- United Airlines delayed the start of planned flights to Lagos, Nigeria, because of regulatory issues.
- The FAAN has completed the installation of the airfield lighting system at Sam Mbakwe Airport, Owerri.
- Bristow has signed a $1.5m agreement with the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology, Zaria, for the provision of technical support.
- An Arik Air B737-700 (5N-MJE) was hit by a bird at Calabar Airport on 26 April 2010.
- Although Arik Air withdrew the A330-200 from its schedule, a spokesman of the airline assured that the aircraft will be deployed on the Lagos-Johannesburg route before the start of the World Cup.
- Aero had to ground the aircraft it leases from CHC, mainly the helicopters and Dash 8s used for the oil and gas industry, as the airline could no longer pay the bills.
- Dapo Olumide tendered his resignation as CEO of Nigerian Eagle. The COO of the airline, Kinfe Kahssaye, is appointed as his successor.
- Does anyone know which individuals or institutions are behind the new charter airline TopBrass Aviation? Its CEO, Roland Iyayi, was Managing Director of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA). He was arrested by the EFCC in 2008 for misuse of the N19.5 billion Aviation Intervention Fund.
Nigerian Eagle (formerly Virgin Nigeria) dropped two domestic destinations from its schedule. Kano and Owerri are no longer served by the airline, reducing the number of domestic destinations to four.
Nigerian Eagle Airlines also made changes to its regional flight schedule, but maintained its eight destinations for now.
Due to the closure of Enugu Airport, as of tomorrow, 10 February 2010, Arik Air and Aero Contractors will increase the number of flights from Lagos and Abuja to Owerri, Imo Airport.
Arik Air will serve Owerri thrice daily from Lagos and twice daily from Abuja.
Aero will serve Owerri twice daily from Lagos and daily from Abuja. The airline also added flights between Port Harcourt International and Lagos, now operating this route four times a day.
Nigerian Eagle Airlines dropped Calabar from its schedule as of this week. The airline is now down to six domestic destinations. The three weekly service from Abuja to Accra has been cancelled too.
However, the airline increased frequencies from Lagos to several of its destinations:
- Daily: Lagos-Owerri-Lagos, Lagos-Douala-Lagos, Lagos-Kano (via Abuja)
- Four weekly: Lagos-Libreville (via Douala)
- Thrice weekly: Lagos-Monrovia (via Accra), Lagos-Cotonou-Abidjan-Cotonou-Lagos, Abidjan-Dakar-Abidjan (New Route)
Akanu Ibiam Airport, Enugu, will be closed in January 2010 for repairs. The runway will be extended to 3000m and broadened to 60m. The project should be completed in 12 months.
The Minister of Aviation, Babatunde Omotoba, denied that Enugu Airport was granted an international status. Only Abuja, Kano, Lagos, and Port Harcourt enjoy the international airport status in Nigeria.
Traffic will be diverted to Sam Mbakwe Airport, Owerri.
According to Nigerian agencies, the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMA), Lagos, has complied with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) standards on aviation security.
Meanwhile, ASECNA certified the navigational aids at eight Nigerian airports: Abuja, Lagos, Kano, Port Harcourt, Calabar, Sokoto, Owerri, and Ilorin.
Nigeria recorded a considerable growth (17%) in passengers numbers in the first two quarters of 2009.
Akanu Ibiam Airport, Enugu, will be closed for traffic in the coming weeks. The airport will be revamped prior its upgrade to the status of international airport.
Currently Aero Contractors, Arik Air, and Dana Air are operating flights from Lagos and Abuja to Enugu. Flights will be diverted to Imo Airport, Owerri, and helicopter services to Enugu will be put in place.
Hopefully, the project will be completed before or commenced after christmas period.