Air Peace Airlines on Friday launched its international operations with flights on the Lagos – Sharjah – Dubai routes.
Chairman/CEO of the airline, Mr. Allen Onyema, who spoke at a brief ceremony held before the take-off of the inaugural flight from the Murtala Muhammed International Airport Lagos, assured passengers of quality service delivery, saying the airline’s entry into the Lagos-Dubai route would create the needed competition to cut down on the exorbitant airfares paid by Nigerians to foreign airlines on the route. Onyema also said the airline had sealed an interlining agreement with a foreign airline in Sharjah (one of the emirates making up the United Arab Emirates) that allows the seamless connection of passengers on Air Peace flight to over 34 countries once passengers disembark in Sharjah.
“I am so grateful to God and to Nigerians that after four years of operation, we are going international today,” said Onyema.
I have no doubt in my mind that we will persevere and last on this Lagos-Sharjah-Dubai route. The time to stop the short-changing of Nigerians by foreign airlines has come. We will continue to fly safely and land safely, Onyema assured.
The Air Peace CEO also thanked the Federal government and regulatory agencies in Nigeria for working assiduously to assist the airline to overcome all bureaucratic and technical hurdles to launch its flight operations between Nigeria and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on its target date of Friday, July 5, 2019.
According to him, the airline had invested massive funds in the acquisition of the right aircraft (three of the Boeing 777 series of aircraft) for its international operations as well as in the training of pilots to man the aircrafts and regulators from Nigeria.
The purchase of the three wide-bodied Boeing 777 aircraft was also in order to have sufficient back-up that would forestall any flight cancellation once it launches into the international market, Onyema said.
He said the wide-bodied B777 aircraft deployed for international operations had a capacity to carry over 374 passengers and that it was a safe and trustworthy airplane.
Chairman of the Airlines Operators of Nigeria (AON), Capt. Noggie Megison who also spoke at the event called on the Federal government to stand solidly behind the airline as it weathers the storms of operating in the international market.
“The government must assist Air Peace play the international aeropolitics as the flag carrier of Nigeria,” Meggison said.