By Chinelo Obogo
There was a security breach at the domestic terminal 2 of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport Lagos, as a Boeing 737-73V, with registration number EI-ULN, belonging to Arik Air was burgled and its Flight Management System stolen.
The FMS is a computer designed to provide virtual data and operational harmony between closed and open elements associated with a flight from pre-engine start and take-off, to landing and engine shutdown. The aircraft was leased from Mongolia -based Eznis Airways LLC. A source at the airline confirmed to Daily Sun that the theft took place in the late hours of Wednesday January 19, 2022 to the early hours of Thursday January 20 leading to flight cancellations and postponement.
“The aircraft was parked inside the tarmac at MM2 and someone gained access to the electrical electronic base where we have all the systems. There is a door underneath the aircraft where they opened to gain access to remove the FMC and that was why we had obstruction in our operations that day.
“It is expected that the CCTV should be on and capture whoever did it but we haven’t heard anything to that effect. That equipment that was stolen is a small but expensive component of the aircraft.
In fact to repair it would cost us about $15,000 while a brand new one costs about $300,000 as of 2021.
“Every item in an aeroplane has serial numbers and can be tracked anywhere in the world, so I don’t know how the thief intends selling it unless the person has a vendor. That is why we believe it is internal sabotage,” the source said. Bi Courtney, the concessionaire in charge of the terminal was not available for comments at the time of filing this report and the spokesperson of the airline declined commenting.