The House of Representatives Committee on Aviation has rescheduled its investigative hearing on the controversial launch of Air Nigeria, Nigeria’s national carrier, by the last administration of former President, Muhammadu Buhari.
The committee had invited relevant stakeholders to the hearing earlier scheduled for Monday in Abuja. However, representatives of most of the stakeholders had left the venue before the arrival of the committee’s Chairman, Nnolim Nnaji, who came about two hours behind schedule.
The stakeholders invited by the committee include the Ministry of Aviation, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Justice, Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission, Airline Operators of Nigeria, Ethiopian Airlines as well as aviation fuel (Jet-A1) suppliers.
Nnaji, after his arrival, apologised to stakeholders who waited behind at the venue, asking that the hearing be postponed to 3pm on Tuesday (today), PUNCH reports.
SaharaReporters had about a week ago reported that the Muhammadu Buhari-led Nigerian government committed a major blunder in its usual deception of Nigerians by unveiling a Boeing 737-800 series aircraft as the “Nigerian Air” which actually belongs to Ethiopia Airlines.
The plane unveiled as Nigerian Air is over 10 years old and belongs to Ethiopian Airlines.
According to information obtained by SaharaReporters from Plane Spotters, a platform which takes an inventory of aircraft, “The Registration Number is ET-APL and the Mode is S Q4005C. The Serial Number: 40965/4075. The first flight was an Ethiopian Airlines aircraft. Then it became Malawi Airlines on 16th February 2014. It was then acquired again by Ethiopian Airlines in 2015 and has been operating under Ethiopian Air since then.
“Then on the 26th of May 2023, it has Nigeria Air colours without changing ownership. It was first spotted in South Africa before it flew to Nigeria today.”
The aircraft took off from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, at 9:55 am on Friday and landed at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, at 12:43 pm.
The Buhari administration had failed to deliver Nigeria Air after eight years, over the controversy that surrounded the national carrier.
The Federal Government had boycotted domestic airlines, under the aegis of the Airline Operators of Nigeria, and signed a deal with Ethiopian Airlines to float the Nigerian carrier.
The AON had consequently dragged the government and its agencies before a court to stop the process.