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NCAA grants AOC to Dana , Sky Jet airlines

By The Citizen
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Dana Airline has been re-certified to fly in by the Nigerian aviation authorities, exactly six months after its operations certificate was withdrawn after the fatal crash of one of its aircraft.

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Wednesday, presented Airlines Operators Certificate (AOC) to  Dana Air and Sky Jet.

The Director-General of NCAA, Dr. Harold Demuren, made the presentation in Lagos.

He said that the two carriers had completed all the safety procedures required. He added that they also had successfully undergone the five phases, which was the final stage of signing the AOC.

'The airlines have well trained crews, good aircraft and good maintenance, and have followed the right process', he said.

He noted that   the long procedure was to ensure safety of all flight operations in the country, to have zero accident record in aviation industry, in the country.

Demuren said that this would demonstrate to passengers and the pubic that both NCAA and the airlines are concerned about passengers' protection.

NCAA however has restrained the Dana Air from commencing operations until it has completed compensation payments to the families of June 3 air crash of the airline.

The management of Dana noted that it had paid 30 per cent of initial compensation payment and promised to pay the remaining 70 per cent as soon as possible.

However NCAA insisted that all the payments must be completed before it can be allowed to fly.

The Managing Director, Dana Airline, Mr. Jackie Hathiramani, assured the NCAA that the airline would comply with its regulations. He said that the company would pay the victims full compensation before the end of this month.

'We have returned the letters of administrations from the five families to the probate registry of the Abuja High Court for verifications and the airline would pay the 70 per cent (70,000 US dollars) to each of them before the end of the month.

'The processing of fast tracking the verifications lies with the probate registry and Dana Management is awaiting the release of the letters, “ he said.

Demuren, who stated that the airlines must install the Automatic Flight Information Reporting System (AFIRS) in all their aircraft, explained that the system would assist to increase flight safety, especially when the aircraft is flying.

'AFIRS would indicate when there is problem in an aircraft, why it happened. This would change the way we do aviation in Nigeria, so that the flying public would have confidence in the system', he said.

Also speaking during the presentation, the Chairman of Sky Jet Airline, Alhaji Kashim Shettima said that the new airline would begin flight operations with five aircraft, stating that the airline would maintain a safety culture.

He commended the NCAA for issuing the AOC to his airline and assured full compliance with regulations to ensure safety of passengers and aircraft.

He urged the Federal Government to implement the zero tariff policy on commercial aircraft and spare parts importation as promised by President Goodluck Jonathan during his 2013 budget presentation.