Nigerian government suspends ten private jet operators

The Nigerian Government has suspended the licences of ten private jet companies that violated the agency’s regulations, warning that it is illegal to engage Permit for Non-Commercial Flight (PNCF) holders for commercial purposes

Penpushing reports that the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) made the suspension announcement on Thursday in a statement by the agency Public Affairs and Consumer Protection Director, Michael Achimugu,

The statement posted on the agency’s official X page declared that the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) Regulations 2023 Part 18.3.4 forbids holders of Permit for Non-Commercial Flight (PNCF) from using their aircraft to carry passengers, cargo or mail for hire or reward (commercial operation or charter services).

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Penpushing further reports that the Acting Director of Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Chris Najomo was quoted saying that in line with zero tolerance for violation of regulations, the authority has suspended the Permit for Non-Commercial Flight (PNCF) of these operators

‘In line with our zero tolerance for violation of regulations, the Authority has suspended the PNCF of these operators. To further sanitise the general aviation sector, I have directed a reevaluation of all holders of PNCF be carried out on or before the 19th of April 2024 to ascertain compliance with regulatory requirements. PNCF holders must submit relevant documents to the authority within the next 72 hours”, Najomo, added.

Penpushing also reports that Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) emphasized that as  a result of flagrant disregard of this rule, it had earlier directed all holders of Non-Commercial Flight (PNCF) to undergo re-evaluation which should have been concluded by the 19th of April.

‘To this end, the NCAA has suspended the PERMIT FOR NON-COMMERCIAL FLIGHTS of Azikel Dredging Nigeria Ltd, Bli-Aviation Safety Services, Ferry Aviation Developments Ltd, Matrix Energy Ltd, Marrietta Management Services Ltd, Worldwide Skypaths Services, Mattini Airline Services Ltd, Aero Lead Ltd, Sky Bird Air Ltd and Ezuma Jets Ltd,” the agency said.

Penpushing reports that the authorities warned that engaging Permit for Non-Commercial Flight (PNCF) holders for commercial purposes is illegal and will not hesitate to initiate enforcement actions against any holder found guilty of illegal operations.

‘Furthermore, Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) officials have been deployed to General Aviation Terminals (GAT) and private wings of the airports to monitor activities of the PNCF holders,” the agency said.

Penpushing reports that it is recalled that in April, the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) suspended three private jet owners for carrying out commercial flight operations, and at that time the agency noted that the use of private jets for commercial purposes prompted the aviation minister, Festus Keyamo, to issue directives for the cessation of such acts.

Penpushing further reports that in similar vein, this riot act was directed at existing Air Operator Certificate (AOC) holders, who utilise aircraft listed on their Permit for Non-Commercial Flight (PNCF) for commercial charter operations.

The Minister it is recalled, last month, inaugurated an eight-member ministerial task force committee on illegal private chartered operations and related matters to address alleged money laundering, drug trafficking and other illegal activities by private jet operators in Nigeria.

“To stem the practice of illegal chartered operations including illicit activities raising security and safety concerns culminating to significant financial losses to the Federal Government, Honourable Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Festus Keyamo, SAN, CON, FciArb. (UK), has inaugurated a Ministerial Task Force Committee on illegal private chartered operations and related matters,” the minister said.

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