Chinelo Obogo, Lagos
The Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has suspended the aircraft leasing operations (Specs Part G) of the Air Operator’s Certificate of Sky Power Express Airways Nigeria Limited and seven others over non-compliance and/ or violations of the provision of NCARS Part 18.104.22.168(b).
A letter dated June 30th, 2020 reference number NCAA/DG/AIR/11/16/129 was signed by the Director-General of NCAA, Captain Musa Nuhu and titled: ‘Suspension of the Ops specs Part G (Aircraft Leasing Operations) of your organisation’s Air Operator’s Certificate’ was addressed to the Managing Director of Sky Power Express Airways Nig Limited.
The letter read:
‘Be informed that by this action your organisation ceases to exercise all the privileges associated with Part G authorisation.
‘Furthermore, the operations of the following aircraft listed on the Part G of your organisation’s operations specifications are hereby suspended pending a full audit of your organisation and compliance with all the relevant Nig. CARS: Hawker 800XP: N838BB, Hawker 800XP: N552ME, Hawker 800XP: N749WW, Hawker 800XP: ZS-EXG, CL604-D-ANGB, CL604-T7-NMN,
CL601-N580KR and Gulfstream 200-N100EK.’
Other airlines whose aircraft were affected by the audit include CL604-N605JA operated by Jedidiah Air, CL604-N880ET operated by OmniBlu, CL604-N604WL operated by West Link Airlines, G.IV-N990EA operated by NestOil, CL601-N253LA operated by West Link Airlines, G1159A-N313MS operated by Izy Air and CL604-G-FABO operated by Jet Support Services.
NCARS Part 22.214.171.124(b) refers to Wet Leasing aircraft and states that: No holder of an AOC issued under this Part 9 may allow another entity or air operator to conduct wet-lease operations on its behalf (a wet-lease in) unless—(1) That air operator holds an AOC or its equivalent from a Contracting State that authorizes those operations;(2) The AOC holder advises the Authority of such operations and provides a copy of the AOC under which the operation was conducted;(3) Such operation does not exceed a period of 12 months and(4) The Authority approves the operations.
The NCAA had earlier warned that only domestic operators that meet the protocols set by the agency will be granted a permit to resume operations on June 8.
Captain Nuhu said despite the fact that domestic flights will resume on Wednesday, June 8, any operator who doesn’t comply with the stipulated protocols will not be given a permit to operate.
He said some airlines will be given the approval to start but those airlines that haven’t met the criteria will not operate.
In a related development, Capt Nuhu has said that palliatives as support to the industry by the Federal Government may be in the form of grants and loans.
He said the loans would be long time loans with single-digit for the entire industry.
Speaking at a virtual meeting of the Aviation Leadership CEO forum held on Tuesday, July 7, on the topic: ‘COVID-19, Civil Aviation Regulations in Africa’, which was organised by Tony Ukachukwu, Capt Nuhu said it is not only the airlines that have lost money but also government agencies since there were no flight operations.
According to him, 90% of the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) revenue has been lost and currently using its reserve which was about to run out.
‘We have lost over 90% of our revenue in the last 3 months or so, we are operating basically on our reserve and we are about to run out,’ he said.
He said that the Federal Government is aware of their situation and is making efforts to ensure the palliatives get to the industry soon, adding that the palliatives are coming and the minister would certainly make an announcement soon in this regard.
‘It is going to be very low digit rate not only for the airlines, [but] it is [also] for the entire aviation ecosystem including even the taxi drivers at the airports, car hire, ground handlers including the aviation agencies, [and] the civil aviation authority,’ Nuhi said.