Chidoka Raises the Alarm on Intimidation Over Revocation of Private Airline Licenses 

Osita Chidoka, Aviation Minister has raised that alarm that he is already receiving messenges of intimidation and threats on some quarters over revocation of the licences of private jet owners who used their aircraft for commercial purposes. 
Chidoka directed the NCAA to review its regulations on the OpSpec issue and stressed that the ministry would not be intimated or frightened.
He said, “I want to warn most operators of these private aircraft because some of them have started to engage in intimidation; some are sending us threat letters of what happened to previous ministers. But I want to assure them that this minister will not be intimidated.
“I will not bend the rules for anybody in Nigeria and I have the confidence of Mr. President that as the rules are clearly laid, we will apply them without fear or favour.
“So, all aircraft operators, no matter how highly placed they are in Nigeria, must work within the ambit of the law and the regulations of the NCAA. There are no exceptions to these rules and I will not authorise any waiver or exception. Those of them who engage in intimidation and threats, I want to assure them that those days are over in the aviation industry.”
The Federal Government on Tuesday approved the revocation of the licences of private jet owners who used their aircraft for commercial purposes, thereby contravening the private operations certificates issued to them by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority.
This came as Chidoka, stated that some operators of private jets in the country were beginning to threaten him as well as intimidate employees of the Federal Ministry of Aviation over the decision to bar them from operating commercial flights.
Receiving a report on foreign-registered and privately-operated aircraft operating in Nigeria at the headquarters of the ministry in Abuja, Chidoka approved the immediate implementation of the recommendations of the report, among which was the revocation of the licences of errant private jet owners.
The report was put together by a ministerial committee chaired by the Senior Special Adviser to the President on Aviation Reform, Capt. Victor Iriobe.
Although the extract from the report that was made available to our correspondent did not state the private jet owners whose certificates were to be revoked, it stated that 51 private jets operating under 27 operators were in the NCAA database.
It stated that after investigating the activities of all foreign-registered and privately-owned aircraft issued with the Flight Operations Clearance Certificate and Maintenance Clearance Certificate by the NCAA, some jet owners were discovered to be operating commercial charter flights instead of keeping to their “authorisation for private (not-for-hire or reward) operations within Nigeria.”
It further stated that the committee reviewed the operations of all aircraft under the Air Operator Certificate Operational Specification, with a view to ensuring their adherence to relevant aviation regulations.
Endorsing the report, Chidoka said, “I have accepted the recommendation on the FOCC and MCC certificate holders that engage in commercial charter activities in contravention of the NCAA regulation. Therefore, we will revoke their FOCC and MCC; the NCAA should revoke them immediately and impose the penalty of $100,000 on those aircraft.
“I have also accepted that from March 1, 2015, all foreign-registered, private category aircraft that are listed on the OpSpecs Part G of some AOC holders must be removed from that status by the NCAA. Consequently, the aircraft operations will remain grounded until the NCAA approves an alternative operational status for the aircraft.”

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