Why we grounded Kenya Aircraft – FG

By The Citizen

The Federal Government on Thursday confirmed that it grounded a Kenyan aircraft at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos for non-adherence to security procedures.

The Coordinating General Manager, Corporate Communications, Aviation Parastatals, Mr. Yakubu Dati, said that the aircraft that brought in three Nigerian deportees had been detained by security agencies since June 3, 2013 under the directive of the Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

He said the plane, a DC-9 with registration number 5Y-SAX and owned by Cavoc Airlines was currently going through security routine and when this was completed, it would be released.

Dati said the aircraft arrived Nigeria on June 3 with 15 crew members and the three Nigerian deportees.

The deported Nigerians, he said, were also in detention at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

He said, 'On June 3, 2013 at about 18:36 hours, a Kenyan aircraft with registration number 5Y-SAX, owned by Cavoc Airlines arrived Nigeria with a total of 18 persons.

'Among them, 15 were crew members, while three were passengers. The three Nigerians were said to be deportees from Kenya, but the security agencies in Lagos discovered that certain procedures were not complied with and subsequently grounded the aircraft.

'That is why the aircraft has been grounded and it is going through security routine at the moment. As soon as the grey areas are clarified, the aircraft will be released according to the laws of the land. The type of aircraft is DC-9 and the deportees are still in detention.'

Reports had it that Kenya's new President, Uhuru Kenyatta, had publicly directed security agencies to deport suspected drug peddlers in the country.

There are suspicions that Nigerians are being particularly targeted for deportation by the Kenyan government for flimsy excuses.