Aviation minister allays fears, says no Nigerian carrier operates B737 Max 8
London, March 13, 2019 (AltAfrica)-The Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi Sirika, said on Tuesday that Nigeria does not have any Boeing 737 MAX being operated by any Nigerian airline on its register.
Mr Sirika disclosed this in a statement by James Odaudu, Deputy Director, Press and Public Affairs, Federal Ministry of Transportation, on Tuesday in Abuja.
He said contrary to the concern generated by Ethiopian Airlines’ unfortunate incident on Sunday, there was no cause for concern.
According to the minister, aviation is one the world over, and that any accident anywhere is a tragedy to the global aviation industry.
“Nigeria identifies and commiserates with the Ethiopian aviation authorities those who have lost loved ones, including two distinguished Nigerians, in their moment of grief.
“The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), the industry regulator in Nigeria, has issued the necessary advisory as it relates to the country.
“As we continue to mourn the ET crash in Addis, and pray for the victims, we wish to reassure Nigerians that we do not have any Boeing 737 Max on Nigeria’s register to worry about.
“Civil Aviation Authority has issued the needed advisory, please,” the minister said.
Mr Sirika also assured Nigerians of the government’s commitment to creating of an environment that guarantees safety and security in air transportation.
The ET’s Addis Ababa – Nairobi bound flight operated with B737 Max8 airplane on Sunday, had crashed shortly after take-off killing all 159 passengers and crew on board.
The similar aircraft type being operated by Lions Air of Indonesia, has crashed in October 2018 killing all onboard.
Since the accident occurred on Sunday, many issues had been raised concerning the aircraft with China and Ethiopia suspending the use of B737 Max in their fleets.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Air Peace is the only Nigerian carrier that has placed order for 10 of such aircraft type at present but yet to take delivery of the aircraft.
According to the statement by its spokesperson, Chris Iwarah, Air Peace is yet to take delivery of the aircraft as they are still at the design and configuration stage of the order.
“This clarification has become necessary in view of numerous calls and enquiries on our response to the incidents involving the B737 Max 8 aircraft.
“Although, it is premature to comment on the incidents, we wish to assure members of the flying public that we are closely following and monitoring developments on the issue as an airline that prioritises the safety and well-being of our customers,” he said.