…says December take-off target feasible
Posted by Sade Williams
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), on Tuesday, gave reasons the Federal government is involving some of its agencies in the national carrier project.
A non-governmental organisation, Aviation Round Table (ART), had queried the involvement of agencies of government in the deal, calling for transparency and professionalism.
But the Director General of NCAA, Capt. Muhtar Usman, in a chat with journalist said government has decided to involve the aviation agencies in the task force because it does not want the project to flop like others in the past.
Usman, also revealed that the December target of starting operations is feasible, adding that once an operator is properly guided and is willing to go by the guidelines and process of getting an Air Operators Certificate (AOC) , it takes just 90 days.
Usman therefore, assured that, with that timeline in mind, the possibility of national carrier scaling through is quite feasible within the timeframe.
“The presence of the agencies inside the task force is to ensure that the right things are done, they are not midwifing in the real sense of the national carrier but they are guiding the process to ensure that it is done in line with the international standards and best practices in the area of safety, security and also comfort of the passengers”.
Usman said several airlines came and left, probably because they did not follow the guide given to them, especially now that the civil aviation authority is there first, to promote aviation activities in Nigeria to ensure safety, security and comfort.
Emphasising further on government readiness and the plans put in place, the NCAA boss added “this time around, government says we should go and ensure that even before take-off that nothing is short circuited, process followed so that they can come to stay, start and stay. The same service we have rendered to every operator that came from the time the operator came at the first phase, coming with the intent that they want to start operating, it is one f the stages in the issuance of the Air Operators Certificate, to the time somebody want to do formal application”.
He equally informed that NCAA also guides operators when it comes to documentation and preparations of the manual which they produce, stressing that if there are errors, corrections, NCAA works to see that everything comes out clean.
“All these we did with all of them to the time they come and demonstrate that they are able to do this and then finally we certify them, we have be doing this, so it is not unusual that you find us in that Task Force”, Usman noted.
He stated that they extend these services e to all the operators because they came through the five stages of obtaining an AOC, adding that it is the same process, to all the operators and that there is no special treatment given to any operator.
He however, said that for the national carrier, the government wants to make sure that it is done properly, and also more active his time around.
The captain said as far as NCAA is the December target is feasible because the process of obtaining the AOC, the permit and so can take a minimum of 90 days even average people do it is 6 months.
He pointed out that those who spend up to 6 months are the operations that have issue because before you move from one stage to another, you must satisfy all the necessary requirements.
“That is why sometimes the delay is not on the part of the Authority but on the part of the operators. If the operator everything is fine, fine from the operator within 90 days we will be able to give them the certificate to operate. We don’t control other things but as far as we are concerned from our own side it is quite feasible”, Usman said. .
He further added that, although government has put in place a transaction adviser which comprises a consortium of advisers, NCAA will continue to guide them just as the agency has guided other operators to ensure that these things are done properly.