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Stakeholder Attributes Absence Of Loose Funds To Shrinking Of Nigerian Airlines - THE INDEPENDENT

JULY 12, 2018

By  Olusegun Koiki

Lagos – The Managing Director of Centurion Security,  Group Captain John Ojikutu (rtd) has said that the number of commercial airlines in the Nigerian aviation industry in recent time shrunk because of lack of loose money, which many of the ‘so called investors’ in the country were used to.

Ojikutu also said that business plans of many of most of the airlines had no connection with the reality of their operations, saying that the carriers are mostly recycled from others in the industry.

Speaking with aviation journalists in Lagos, Ojikutu also said that indigenous airlines have single ownership owned by traditional Nigerian traders or businessmen, stressing that their operations are not a good attraction to technical investors and financial boardroom gurus.

He added: “On the other hand, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) enforcement of the economic registrations is not effective and regular; therefore, gives room to many airlines unhealthy financial status.

“There had been over 50 Nigerian airlines operators in the last 35 years excluding the Nigerian Airways and to some extent Aero, but their effective operational lifespan is less than five years after, which they begin one type of stress or the other due to the reasons given above.

“Aero is one example of this single ownership syndrome that became stressed less than three years the technical partners in the airline withdrew their investment. We also got to the level of four airlines out of many because of the reasons given above, but how many of the four remaining are viable?” he queried.

He insisted that passengers across the country are stranded at airports not because there were no aircraft, but because of poor management of utilisation of capacity.

He explained that the two of the four airlines flying now had between them about 30 new or modern aircraft in their fleet, but queried the number of the aircraft that are in the air.

He insisted that the number of aircraft in the fleet of an airline should not be an ego to brand as capacity, rather the utilisation of that capacity mattered most.

He maintained that the defunct national carrier, Nigerian Airways at a time never had as much aircraft as some of the present airlines, but covered more domestic and international routes than all the present airlines put together.

He emphasised that the only way out of the woods for the carriers in the country was for them to interline and codeshare their operations, but noted that the attitude of Nigerian traditional trading in most them would not allow them shift from the ground of single ownership.

“For as long as there are problems of single ownership owned in the Nigerian commercial aviation, and the airlines are not ready to interlining or co-sharing and there are no efficient way to utilise capacity, the air travelling passengers will suffer.

“For as long there are no loose monies from government and NCAA gets confidence in itself to enforce the economic registrations to the letter, many of them will still fall by the way side or cut short their lifespan.

“For as long as government policy and NCAA registrations fail to address these so long genuine technical investors and financial boardroom gurus would not have attraction to the industry,” he added.


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